Skip to main content

Sign up for our newsletter.

Quality journalism. Progressive values. Direct to your inbox.

For Immediate Release

Contact

Press Release

House Energy & Commerce Committee Approves Shameful “Polluter Protection” Bills

Statement of Food & Water Watch Executive Director Wenonah Hauter
WASHINGTON -

Today, the House Energy & Commerce Committee rapidly approved several bills promoting dirty energy and rolling back environmental protections. The committee marked up the controversial vehicles after rushing the bills through subcommittee — in some cases, forcing votes on previously unseen legislative language that had not been covered in prior hearings. In response, Food & Water Watch Executive Director Wenonah Hauter issued the following statement:

“Simply put, today’s votes in the House Energy & Commerce Committee represent the fulfillment of a pie-in-the-sky deregulatory wishlist for the ever-polluting oil, gas and nuclear energy sectors. Local communities across the country are pushing for genuine renewable energy solutions to fight climate change. Unfortunately, Congressional Republicans continue to promote a fossil-fueled future that enriches the oil, gas and utility industries while literally cooking our planet.

“Today’s actions by the Energy Committee represent a shameful giveaway to polluters at the expense of the wellbeing of our nation and planet.

“The committee passed Rep. John Shimkus’ (R-Illinois) bill to re-launch the dangerous Yucca Mountain nuclear waste storage facility. Yucca Mountain has been rightly stalled since 1987 because federal officials have repeatedly identified its unacceptable risks to Nevadans, as well as to more than 50 million people in 45 states in proximity to waste that would come to or go from the site. Rep. Shimkus’ legislation accelerates the approval process for Yucca Mountain, removes key Congressional legislative oversight of it, and weakens the environmental review of the proposed facility.

“The committee also passed two bills designed to accelerate the approval of oil and gas pipelines. Rep. Bill Flores’ (R-Texas) legislation would give the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC), already a rubber-stamp approver of fossil fuel infrastructure, even more authority over the interstate gas pipeline projects.

“Rep. Markwayne Mullin’s (R-Oklahoma) legislation would eliminate presidential review of cross-border pipelines, like when President Obama blocked the Keystone XL pipeline because it undermined U.S. efforts to fight climate change. These bills will let FERC steamroll impacted communities, local governments and landowners to more rapidly approve the pipelines that pollute our lands and propel us toward climate chaos.

###

Food & Water Watch mobilizes regular people to build political power to move bold and uncompromised solutions to the most pressing food, water, and climate problems of our time. We work to protect people’s health, communities, and democracy from the growing destructive power of the most powerful economic interests.

Progressives Say 'Do What the People Want and Tax the Rich' to Pay for Infrastructure

"It is obvious that if we're going to address the needs of working families in this country, we need revenue," says Sen. Bernie Sanders, "and one way that we get that revenue is by demanding that the wealthiest people, the largest corporations are paying their fair share."

Jessica Corbett, staff writer ·


Doctors Without Borders Calls on BioNTech to Share Vaccine Tech With World

"The faster companies share the know-how, the faster we can put an end to this pandemic."

Andrea Germanos, staff writer ·


Over 30,000 US Veterans of Post-9/11 Wars Have Killed Themselves Since 2001

"As we come closer to the twentieth anniversary of the September 11th attacks, we must reflect on the mental health cost of the Global War on Terror."

Julia Conley, staff writer ·


Sunrise Ends 400-Mile Climate March With Arrests at Ted Cruz's House

The Gulf South marchers demand that Congress and the Biden White House pass bold climate jobs legislation, including a bill to create a Civilian Climate Corps.

Jessica Corbett, staff writer ·


Global Hopes in Doubt After G7 Fails to Meet Climate Finance Pledges for Poor Nations

"I'd have really hoped for a clearer signal on how and when we will be able to see the commitment to mobilize the $100 billion fulfilled."

Andrea Germanos, staff writer ·