The Progressive


A project of Common Dreams

For Immediate Release

Expert contact: Bill Waren, (202) 222-0746,
Communications contact: Kate Colwell, (202) 222-0744,

Customs Bill Amendment Directs USTR to Ignore Climate Change


Last night the House Rules Committee ruled on an amendment by House Ways and Means Chairman Paul Ryan (R-Ohio) to the customs bill that would modify the negotiating objectives in the Fast Track bill and direct the United States Trade Representative to take no action to address climate change. The text of the provision is as follows:

.--Section 102(a) of the Bi-partisan Congressional Trade Priorities and Accountability Act of 2015, as amended by subsection (a) of this section, is amended--
(1) in paragraph (13), by striking ''and'' at the end;
(2) in paragraph (14), by striking the period at the end and inserting ''; and''; and
(3) by adding at the end the following:
''(15) to ensure that trade agreements do not require changes to U.S. law or obligate the United States with respect to global warming or climate change.'' (pg. 251)

Friends of the Climate and Energy Campaigner Luisa Abbott Galvao issued the following statement in response:

President Obama needs to make it clear that '21st century trade deals' cannot block climate action. The president should start by telling Republican leadership and the public that the provision in the customs amendment is unacceptable. President Obama cannot credibly claim that trade deals will force other countries to raise their environmental standards if he allows the same deals to secure a pass for the U.S. to keep dumping carbon into the planet's atmosphere.

Friends of the Earth fights for a more healthy and just world. Together we speak truth to power and expose those who endanger the health of people and the planet for corporate profit. We organize to build long-term political power and campaign to change the rules of our economic and political systems that create injustice and destroy nature.

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