Congressman Eliot Engel, a top member of the Energy and Commerce Committee, released the following statement today in response to President Trump’s executive order rolling back the Clean Power Plan and eliminating the consideration of climate change and the social cost of carbon when evaluating government actions:
“President Trump has been ruthlessly chopping away at our nation’s environmental regulations since he took office, and today’s Executive Order takes his misguided efforts to a new and dangerous level. It seeks to dismantle President Obama’s efforts to combat climate change in the name of bringing back coal and other dirty-energy jobs. This effort rests on a false premise and threatens the health and security of the American people.
“Coal mining jobs are not disappearing because of regulations. They are disappearing because natural gas is cheap, wind and solar are booming, and automation has allowed coal companies to produce more fuel with fewer employees. Clean energy jobs across the country outnumber fossil fuel jobs by more than 2.5 to 1. Solar and wind jobs are growing at a rate 12 times faster than the rest of the U.S. economy. But this executive order, much like the President’s proposed budget, is a job-killer that throws obstacles in the way of innovation and job creation in the renewable industry in favor of sweetheart deals for fossil fuels.
“Repeal of the Clean Power Plan, which aims to slash greenhouse gas emission from electricity by 32 percent by 2030, will lead to billions of additional tons of carbon being released into the atmosphere contributing to hundreds of thousands of premature deaths.
“The Department of Defense has viewed climate change as a national security concern for at least a decade, and ignoring it threatens our military installations and infrastructure, while raising the potential for increased conflict across the globe.
“Today President Trump failed the American people by rejecting the overwhelming scientific evidence and economic benefits supporting climate action.”