Oversight Committee Releases “COR Climate Change Agenda” for Climate Week of Action
Washington, D.C. (Sept. 24, 2020)—Today, Rep. Carolyn B. Maloney, the Chairwoman of the Committee on Oversight and Reform (COR), released the “COR Climate Change Agenda,” a set of six bills that draw on recommendations from the Select Committee on the Climate Crisis that fall within COR’s jurisdiction.
The COR Climate Change Agenda aims to utilize the federal government’s unique position in the fight against climate change by making important reforms in the pursuit of greener and more efficient policies, programs, and processes.
The federal government is the largest employer in the United States, the largest purchaser of goods and services in the world, and an important partner to states, localities, Tribal governments, the public and private sectors, and other countries.
The Agenda includes legislation authored by Chairwoman Maloney, Rep. Harley Rouda, the Chairman of the Subcommittee on Environment, Rep. Gerry E. Connolly, the Chairman of the Subcommittee on Government Operations, and other Members of Congress.
“From above-average hurricane seasons to unprecedented wildfires, the climate crisis is already devastating the lives of so many Americans,” said Chairwoman Maloney. “Congress and the Administration have a duty to lead—a responsibility to act. The COR Climate Change Agenda sets forth legislation that will reduce the federal government’s environmental footprint and enhance its ability to address this crisis. I am deeply committed to making this a reality, and to pursuing additional legislation within our jurisdiction to combat climate change.”
“I am proud to join my colleagues on the Oversight Committee as the Committee takes a major step in addressing the climate crisis,” said Subcommittee Chairman Rouda. “Bills like the Climate PREP Act would enshrine adaptation and mitigation measures throughout the United States' largest employer -- the federal government. While the President rolls back common-sense climate regulations, Congress is leading to protect the lives and livelihoods of millions. I thank Chairwoman Maloney for her partnership in introducing and advancing crucial resiliency legislation.”
“The USPS currently operates one of the largest and oldest public sector vehicular fleets in the country,” said Subcommittee Chairman Connolly. “The Postal Vehicle Modernization Act included in the COR Climate Change Agenda will incentivize a transition to electric and zero-emission vehicles and help drive the USPS into a 21st century clean energy future.”
“The science is clear -- climate change is happening,” said Senator Klobuchar. “There is real, urgent action we can take right now to tackle climate change. The Climate PREP Act would ensure that each agency in the federal government has a plan in place to respond to the challenges of a changing climate. Inaction is not an option.”
“This climate emergency calls for an all hands on deck response to prevent further destruction of communities and ecosystems across America,” said Rep. Welch. “My bill to allow the government to more easily secure and utilize renewable energy is a small but important part of the solution. I am pleased to have it included in this bold legislative package to mitigate the urgent threat of climate change. We have no more time to waste.”
“In addition to our work to protect the reliability of the U.S. Postal Service from Trump and DeJoy, there is a lot more we can do to address the USPS’ modern challenges,” said Rep. Huffman. “The Postal Vehicle Modernization Act is a win all the way around – we can slash emissions from one of the largest vehicle fleets in the world, boost clean vehicle manufacturing in this country, and help the USPS save money on wasted fuel and maintenance costs for an aging fleet, allowing the USPS to efficiently and safely meet the needs of the American people.”
“It is high-time that we leverage the resources of the federal government to aid in our transition to an innovative, job-creating, planet-saving, renewable energy economy,” said Rep. Brownley. “The federal government is the single largest purchaser of electricity in the country, which can make it a powerful catalyst in speeding along renewable energy innovation. I am pleased that the House Committee on Oversight and Reform recognizes this too and has included my Green Energy for Federal Buildings Act in its Climate Change Agenda.”
“Climate change is responsible for severe, adverse effects to our environment and unwarranted costs to our economy, and as we make decisions today, we need to think about the effects on our society tomorrow,” Rep. McEachin. “By requiring regulatory decisions to reflect true costs and benefits, the Carbon Pollution Transparency Act will prevent the kind of short-sighted thinking that puts profits over people – and greenlights dangerous climate pollution. This legislation will make it impossible for federal agencies to ignore the harms of climate change in their decision-making, and I am pleased that it has been included in the COR Climate Change Agenda. Together, we can build a safer environment for our children and a stronger economy for everyone.”
“Just this year, we’ve seen record-breaking weather events, from wildfires on the West Coast to hurricanes in the South; floods in Texas and tornadoes in Iowa,” said Rep. Cartwright. “These extreme weather events devastate communities, displace families, and costs billions to recover from. The PREPARE Act is a zero-cost bill supported by Democrats and Republicans that enables federal and local governments to work together on extreme weather preparedness plans and build resilience in our government and communities. I’m proud to see it included in this important agenda.”
Today’s Agenda is being released in conjunction with the final hearing in the 116th Congress in the Subcommittee on Environment’s climate change series. Today’s hearing will focus on concrete solutions to the climate crisis, including actions that can be taken by the federal government to support the transition to a green economy and increase competitiveness in the global marketplace.
The COR Climate Change Agenda includes:
- The Federal Agency Climate PREP Act, to be introduced by Chairwoman Carolyn B. Maloney and Subcommittee on the Environment Chairman Harley Rouda, would require climate change adaptation planning and coordination at all federal agencies. Senator Amy Klobuchar is introducing the Senate companion.
- H.R. 8174, the Carbon Pollution Transparency Act, introduced by Representative A. Donald McEachin, would require federal agencies to use consistent, science-based figures in their rulemaking and purchasing decisions to quantify the long-term costs of greenhouse gas emissions.
- H.R. 5142, the Green Energy for Federal Buildings Act, introduced by Representative Julia Brownley, would require the federal government to increase its use of renewable energy to 100% by 2050.
- H.R. 7969, the Postal Vehicle Modernization Act, introduced by Representative Jared Huffman, Chairwoman Maloney, and Subcommittee on Government Operations Chairman Gerry Connolly, would require the Postal Service to upgrade its fleet to electric or zero-emission vehicles by 2040.
- H.R. 932, the Renewable Energy Certainty Act, introduced by Representative Peter Welch, would authorize federal agencies to procure renewable energy and energy from co-generation sources for up to 30 years.
- H.R. 4347, the Preparedness and Risk Management for Extreme Weather Patterns Assuring Resilience and Effectiveness (PREPARE) Act, introduced by Representative Matt Cartwright, would enhance federal planning and preparation for extreme weather and disseminate best practices to help regional, state, and local efforts to develop their plans to respond to extreme weather.
Click here to read the COR Climate Change Agenda.
Click here to read the PREP Act One Pager.