Lawmakers to probe transport emissions, fossil fuel companies

Source: By Nick Sobczyk, E&E News reporter • Posted: Monday, October 21, 2019

 Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-Md.). Photo credit: Raskin/Facebook

Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-Md.), chairman of the Oversight and Reform Subcommittee on Civil Rights and Civil Liberties, will lead a hearing this week on the fossil fuel industry and climate research. Raskin/Facebook

Two committees this week will continue their separate quests to draw up climate plans for House Democrats.

The Select Committee on the Climate Crisis and the Energy and Commerce Committee have both been holding comparable hearings with similar witnesses during the last few months.

Their efforts are part of dueling actions to craft an expansive climate policy that Democrats could try to enact if they take control of the White House in the 2020 elections.

Energy and Commerce Democrats have promised to release a bill by the end of the year aimed at getting the United States to net-zero emissions by 2050, while the select committee has a mandate from leadership to develop a broad report on climate policy.

The select panel will kick things off tomorrow afternoon with a hearing on “natural solutions” to slashing emissions and more resilient buildings.

The next morning, Energy and Commerce will meet to discuss the largest U.S. source of greenhouse gas emissions: the transportation sector. Specifically, the Subcommittee on Environment and Climate Change will look at emissions from heavy-duty transportation, such as trains and airplanes.

“The free-flowing transportation of people, goods and services is essential to our modern society and economy,” subcommittee Chairman Paul Tonko (D-N.Y.) and full committee Chairman Frank Pallone (D-N.J.) said in a joint statement.

“Yet as substantial emitters of carbon pollution, heavy-duty trucks, buses, planes, trains and ships present unique and pressing challenges in our fight to combat climate change.”

Outside those two panels, the House Oversight and Reform Subcommittee on Civil Rights and Civil Liberties will headline the week in climate with a hearing on the oil industry’s efforts to hide climate science and promote disinformation.

Meanwhile, tomorrow morning, the House Transportation and Infrastructure Subcommittee on Economic Development, Public Buildings and Emergency Management will discuss the federal government’s recovery efforts after recent disasters.