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HEAT Members Outline Consequences as U.S. Officially Rejoins Paris Agreement

February 19, 2021
Press Release

WASHINGTON, D.C.—House Republican Whip Steve Scalise (R-La.) and over 40 members of the House Energy Action Team released the following statements in opposition to the United States officially rejoining the Paris Agreement:

Republican Whip Steve Scalise (R-La.): "At a time when millions have lost their jobs and families who are struggling need affordable energy the most, President Biden has officially entered the United States back into the detrimental Paris Agreement. Our new commitment to the Paris Agreement, backed by unrealistic policies, will only place additional undue burdens on American families and workers during a time of unprecedented economic uncertainty.
 
"Estimates of the Obama Administration’s prior commitments show that the reduction in manufacturing necessary to comply with the unrealistic Paris Agreement mandates would destroy millions of American jobs – including many of the energy jobs that are so critical to our economy in Louisiana. Those jobs will be handed over to countries like China and India, who emit significantly more carbon than us now, and are allowed to increase their emissions through 2030 under the flawed terms of the agreement. The radical targets of the Paris Agreement are so unrealistic that not even France is in compliance.
 
"Sadly, today’s action demonstrates that President Biden is caving to the demands of his far-left base at the expense of American workers and U.S. energy independence."

HEAT Co-Chair, Rep. Jeff Duncan (R-S.C.): “Another job-destroying, America-Last move by President Biden is officially in the books. The President has formally recommitted the United States to the Paris Agreement. This ill-informed decision will stifle GDP, force good-paying jobs overseas, raise energy costs, and severely undermine our global competitiveness. This agreement is nothing but a weak globalist attempt to push other countries to better their environmental standards, while undercutting America’s own success. We lead the world in CO2 emission reductions, but policies like this will have an adverse impact by forcing U.S. jobs and industries overseas to countries with virtually no environmental standards. It allows participating countries, which includes some of the world’s worst polluters, to set their own plan and timeline for improving their environmental standards without any real sense of enforcement to ensure they deliver on their promises. American taxpayers shouldn’t be responsible for bailing out countries with inadequate environmental standards like China, who have no tangible goals set to improve their standards in the immediacy. I urge President Biden to reconsider and work with Members of Congress on America-First energy policies that bolster our national security, create jobs, and lower energy costs for American families.” 

HEAT Co-Chair, Rep. Markwayne Mullin (R-Okla.): "Once again we are seeing President Biden trying to appease his radical base. Rejoining the Paris Agreement will do nothing for global emissions at the cost of American jobs. Our adversaries like China will continue to increase their emissions while we handcuff ourselves to standards all for the sake of ‘going green’.”


Republican Conference Chair Liz Cheney (R-Wyo.): “The Paris Accord is a bad agreement based on flawed science. It subjects the United States to unattainable requirements that will destroy jobs in Wyoming and across the country, while allowing other nations with terrible environmental track records to continue to operate without consequences. President Biden’s decision to rejoin this deal is entirely motivated by politics, which provides no comfort to the American people who will lose their jobs or pay higher energy bills as a result of today’s action.”

House Natural Resources Committee Republican Leader Bruce Westerman (R-Ark.): “Putting America first means pursuing an all-of-the-above energy strategy, emphasizing pro-growth solutions, and innovating technology that makes energy production and usage cleaner, safer, and lower cost. The ping pong match of joining, leaving, and rejoining the Paris Agreement is more talk, less action, and has accomplished little. In addition to my belief that these agreements should be done by the Senate, the administration’s decision to rejoin is yet another out of touch attempt to address real environmental issues without a meaningful plan. American innovation has led the world in actually reducing emissions, unlike many of the world’s top polluters that are part of the Paris Agreement. We should be spending our time and resources on solutions that actually work for America’s energy needs and our economy. The rest of the world will follow when our environmental practices and technology are not only the cleanest and the best, but also the most economical.” 

House Committee on Foreign Affairs Republican Leader Michael McCaul (R-Texas): “President Biden claimed throughout his campaign he wanted a ‘renewal of a politics that’s about solving problems.’ Yet one of the first moves of his presidency was to unilaterally return the United States to the irresponsible and controversial Paris Climate Agreement – bypassing meaningful input from the private sector that would be severely impacted by it, and bypassing what I believe to be Constitutionally-mandated ratification by the U.S. Senate. We can all agree the climate is changing and we must take steps to address it through innovation and technology, but it is dangerous and rash to threaten U.S. competitiveness and national security while China is let off the hook.  If the president truly wanted to build a bipartisan consensus on climate change policy, he should have allowed this to be debated and voted on by the United States Senate.”

House Select Committee on the Climate Crisis Republican Leader Garret Graves (R-La.): “America leads the world in reducing emissions and will continue to lead because of American innovation and the market – not because of government regulations, mandates, or taxes. And if the point of the Paris Accord is to reduce global greenhouse gas emissions, it has failed because this agreement enables China to increase its emissions, which we expect them to do by 50 percent. China already emits more than the United States, Japan, and the European Union combined and has increased emissions by nearly four tons for every ton reduced by the United States in the last 15 years. We all want a cleaner environment and global cooperation is important. But at the end of the day, the poorly negotiated Paris agreement will result in increased global emissions and disproportionately harm America’s economy and competitiveness while giving a free pass to our adversaries.”

Chairman of the Congressional Western Caucus Rep. Dan Newhouse (R-Wash.)“The Paris Climate Agreement was a bad deal then, and it’s a bad deal now. President Trump withdrew the U.S. because our nation already leads the world in carbon emission reduction. Instead of keeping on the path of energy independence, President Biden is rejoining the failed Agreement. This Paris Agreement will exacerbate the devastating effects the pandemic has had on rural communities and our domestic job market, and it will continue to prove ineffective in addressing emissions around the world. This bureaucratic mandate will stifle the American energy industry while bad actors like China continue to pollute. Sadly, President Biden has gone soft on China at the expense of American interests.”

Rep. Bob Latta (R-Ohio): “The Paris Climate Agreement never aimed to seriously tackle the problem of rising emissions, and we shouldn’t be re-joining it. It let countries like China, India, and Brazil off the hook for their environmental malpractice in order to allow them to claim a rhetorical victory. This agreement stifles innovation and burdens our economy without holding accountable the true polluting countries, like China.  The only sensible path forward is to support unleashing America’s innovators in the battle to reducing emissions –which we have done by 20% in the last 15 years – not joining international agreements that could have devastating impacts on American jobs and our economy.”

Rep. Chip Roy (R-Texas): “Rejoining the Paris Climate Agreement will initiate efforts to dismantle two decades of American energy progress and record production levels. Making energy more expensive and less abundant through regulation will hurt our economy, hurt low-income Americans, and will return us to dependence on foreign countries like Russia, Saudi Arabia, and Iran. Our elected officials should stand up for the needs of the American people – not the whims of the global political elite.”


Rep. Carol Miller (R-W. Va.): “President Biden’s disappointing decision to rejoin the Paris Climate Accord cripples American energy independence and threatens energy jobs, especially in my state of West Virginia. Amid a global pandemic, we should focus on creating more jobs, getting hardworking Americans back to work, and revitalizing our economy. I urge President Biden to reverse course so that America can maintain its energy independence, continue to export valuable energy to our allies, and preserve energy jobs at a time when West Virginians and all Americans need them most.”

Rep. John Joyce, M.D. (R-Pa.): “As President Trump has said, the President of the United States serves the people of Pittsburgh – not Paris. The Paris Climate Accord will end America’s energy independence, kill family-sustaining jobs in Pennsylvania and around the country, and raise energy prices for American families. After years of progress, the Biden-Harris Administration’s ill-advised decision to re-join this agreement will be a detriment to America’s job creation, our robust energy industry, and our national security.” 

Rep. Greg Pence (R-Ind.): “I am disappointed with the Biden Administration’s decision to rejoin the Paris Climate Agreement, which is a bad deal for Hoosier families and businesses. The unrealistic mandates which will be forced onto the American energy sector will kill jobs and outsource them to countries like China and India, which are some of the worst polluters in the world. Energy workers, like those in Indiana’s Sixth District, will be hit hardest. This decision by the Biden Administration is nothing more than an attempt to appease their radical environmentalist base at the expense of hardworking Hoosiers."


Rep. Jim Hagedorn (R-Minn.): “President Biden has dealt a major blow to America’s energy industry, skilled workforce and economy by rejoining the costly and ineffective Paris Climate Accord. The terms of this agreement force energy regulations upon the U.S. that will destroy hundreds of thousands of jobs, harm our manufacturing sector, drive up consumer costs, and tank long-term economic growth. The Paris Accord stands to needlessly punish the American people, while not solving anything and giving our trading competitors, especially China, Brazil and India, a competitive advantage. During the Trump administration, we achieved U.S. energy independence and enjoyed low-cost fuel and electricity and dynamic economic growth. President Trump and Republicans put America First; whereas; President Biden and Democrats are putting America last.”

Rep. Kelly Armstrong (R-N.D.): “The Paris Climate Agreement is an onerous and unfair deal, giving China a built in advantage across the world stage. Responsible development of our energy resources has helped us become energy independent, while creating thousands of good paying jobs in North Dakota and across the country. The Biden Administration's decision to rejoin the agreement will jeopardize millions of Americans' livelihoods and weaken our national security.”

Rep. Robert Aderholt (R-Ala.): “Rejoining the Paris Climate Agreement will not only hurt Americans in the pocketbook but fails to hold some of the largest polluters accountable, specifically China. That is why I am a proud cosponsor of the H.Res. 59, which expresses the sense of Congress that the United States should not be a party to this agreement until China and others are held to these strict standards.”

Rep. Rick Allen (R-Ga.): “Rejoining the job-killing Paris Climate Agreement will just hand over more control of America's energy to foreign officials while doing essentially nothing to benefit the environment. This is a huge mistake by the Biden Administration and will cost the American people in the form of higher energy costs and the elimination of thousands of jobs.”

Rep. Buddy Carter (R-Ga.): “Rejoining the Paris Climate Agreement is a terrible decision that will cost 400,000 American jobs. This agreement gives a free pass to the world's worst polluters while killing our own energy industry that produces cleaner and more efficient energy than anywhere in the world. We don’t need to be in an agreement that allows China, who is responsible for nearly a third of global emissions, to continue to increase emissions for years to come. The United States is already reducing emissions despite no longer being a part of the Paris Agreement. This Administration needs to realize we can address climate change through innovation, adaptation, and mitigation without killing American jobs and industries.”

Rep. Troy Balderson (R-Ohio): “I am troubled by the lack of Congressional oversight as we rejoin the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. I believe, as with all international treaties, that two-thirds of the U.S. Senate should have the vote to either pass or reject this agreement. I support the overall reduction in greenhouse gas emissions – something the United States has led the world in for the past 20 years, according to the International Energy Agency. President Biden’s action today to re-join the Paris Climate Agreement is a yet another blow to America’s burgeoning energy independence and flexibility. America’s energy industry should be highly efficient and adaptable – not burdened with additional bureaucratic red-tape. Evidence of this philosophy can be seen with the expansion of American natural gas and our overall carbon footprint reduction. I am fully committed to working with my colleagues to ensure a safe and stable energy future.”

Rep. Debbie Lesko (R-Ariz.): “The Paris Climate Agreement is a bad deal for American workers and their families. President Biden’s reckless decision to reenter this agreement will no doubt lead to increased energy costs and lost jobs for many Americans.” 

Rep. Bill Johnson (R-Ohio): “Under the Paris Climate Agreement, communities, industries, and jobs in Eastern and Southeastern Ohio that depend on fossil fuels are disproportionately harmed. Countries such as China and India face no consequences for increasing their carbon emissions, yet here at home we put ourselves in handcuffs. Rejoining this non-binding agreement puts the American taxpayers on the hook to pay for what countries like China and India won’t, and it represents an ‘America second’ strategy from the Biden Administration.”

Rep. Richard Hudson (R-N.C.): "The Paris Climate Agreement imposes burdensome regulations on the backs of millions of Americans in a time when the COVID-19 pandemic is wreaking havoc on the workforce. As millions of hard-working Americans are out of work and desperately trying to put food on the table due to the Coronavirus pandemic, the Biden administration is putting forth policies that are killing American jobs and raising consumers’ energy bills."

Rep. Dan Bishop (R-N.C.): “Rejoining the Paris Climate Agreement puts America behind China and our other global adversaries. This deal will kill jobs, crush our nation’s energy independence, and cause energy prices to soar for already struggling American families, all while allowing China off the hook. We must resoundingly reject the Biden Administration’s effort to govern by virtue signal."


Rep. Tim Burchett (R-Tenn.): “Just like the rest of the Biden Administration’s energy policies, the decision to rejoin the Paris Climate Agreement is a move to keep the far-left happy and gives foreign nations more influence over how we power our country. This regressive view of energy will ultimately manifest itself in bad policies that cost our workers their jobs and raise energy prices for American consumers.”

Rep. Steven Palazzo (R-Miss.): “The Biden Administration is ignoring science to fill an empty campaign promise by entering the US back into the Paris Climate Accord. This decision will significantly disadvantage the United States without assurances that we are going to see tremendous benefits. Moreover, the agreement is costly to taxpayers and will destroy jobs and energy competition in America, and we simply cannot afford that at this time.”


Rep. Guy Reschenthaler (R-Pa.): “At a time when we should be supporting job creators and workers and reopening our economy, President Biden is further harming hardworking Americans by rejoining the disastrous Paris Agreement. Through competition and innovation, the American energy sector has already significantly reduced carbon emissions while creating jobs in communities in southwestern Pennsylvania and throughout the nation. The burdensome regulations imposed by the Paris Agreement will cost the U.S. good-paying, family-sustaining jobs and increase energy prices on American families, while the world’s worst polluters like China get a free pass. I am deeply disappointed to see President Biden is yet again choosing to appease the radical left rather than help the American people.”

Rep. Fred Keller (R-Pa.): “The Biden Administration’s decision to rejoin the Paris Agreement is a capitulation to globalism and a rejection of the progress America made under President Trump. So far, this administration has only made moves to weaken America’s energy independence at a time when a robust energy sector is more important than ever. Rejoining this flawed agreement sends the wrong message to the world and moves us backward when it comes to ensuring other countries contribute to common environmental objectives.”

Rep. Pete Stauber (R-Minn): “Rejoining the Paris Climate Accord prioritizes China and puts America last. Make no mistake: this is another attack on our way of life by the Biden-Harris Administration. Let’s not send more jobs over to China and instead hold our foreign adversaries accountable.”


Rep. Clay Higgins (R-La.): “Rejoining the Paris Agreement is a very bad idea. It’s wrong for America and will injure the world. It includes zero accountability for China, India, and Russia who will end up producing more of the world’s oil and gas energy as a result. Sending production to countries with horrible ecological records is the worst thing we can do for the climate. This move from the Biden administration is entirely misguided.”

Rep. Ron Estes (R-Kansas): “Today, President Biden once again chose to appease the far-left at the expense of American workers. The hypocritical Paris Climate Agreement is exceptionally biased against the United States' best interests and will cost trillions of dollars and millions of jobs. Recent events prove that our nation needs to invest in secure energy solutions rather than erroneous green initiatives.”


Rep. Pete Sessions (R-Texas): “Rejoining the Paris Climate Agreement is a big mistake. Its results include a mass amount of job loss and higher energy costs driving an overall increase in the price of goods and services. Not to mention, it disproportionally hurts lower-income Americans. The Agreement is a moving target with no real end in sight. High-polluting countries are not being held to the same standard as the United States. We need a viable alternative with an enforcement mechanism capable of holding China and all countries involved accountable.”

Rep. Doug Lamborn (R-Colo.): “America is the leading reducer of greenhouse gases. We simply cannot allow millions of high-paying jobs to be sent overseas to countries that have no obligation to reduce their carbon emissions.  As we recover from the coronavirus pandemic, it is essential that we reinvigorate our economy, not destroy it.”

Rep. French Hill (R-Ark.) “After killing American jobs by revoking the permit for production of the Keystone XL Pipeline and halting drilling on federal lands, it comes as no surprise that President Biden has re-entered the U.S. back into the ineffective Paris Climate Agreement. The non-binding, non-Senate ratified, and mostly symbolic agreement has consistently failed to instill change on a global level. United States greenhouse gas emission fell by 9.2% during 2020 as we continue to take strides toward sustainable energy resources. Meanwhile, the majority of other nations involved in the climate agreement are not on track to meet their energy demands. Once again, President Biden, through executive overreach, is abandoning American workers to appease his progressive voter base and not actually achieving meaningful reform and commitments from the worst emitters of carbon dioxide.”


Rep. Larry Bucshon, M.D. (R-Ind.): “President Biden’s decision to rejoin the Paris Climate Agreement is a mistake. The American people should be in charge of deciding the direction of our domestic energy policy, not foreign nations. Estimates show the agreement could cost 6.5 million American jobs. All the while, our nation’s adversaries like Russia and China are held to ridiculously lower standards. Globally we can all agree that we should continually work to minimize our impact on the environment through innovation and technology, but we must do so by looking through the lens of what is best for the American consumer. This sham of a deal is only going to cripple Hoosier jobs and hurt the pocketbooks of already struggling consumers.” 

Rep. Yvette Herrell (R-N.M.): “President Trump was right to take us out of the Paris Climate Accord. Instead of signing back up to an unratified treaty that some of the world’s biggest polluters continue to violate, we should be focused on protecting our domestic energy producers who are under siege by this administration.”  


Rep. Randy K. Weber (R-Texas): “The American worker and our world-leading energy industry will drive the development of the transformative technologies that will lower emissions and power a new energy environment, but only if we don’t hold them back. Unequal and unenforceable international agreements like the Paris Agreement will tie our hands and ship jobs overseas to our less responsible and less efficient global competitors. Rejoining the Paris Agreement is a PR stunt by President Biden, and it will bring real harm to the American economy. It is a mistake.” 

Rep. Steve Womack (R-Ark.): “The far-left likes to market the Paris Agreement as a magical environmental elixir despite the inconvenient truths of this irrevocably flawed treaty. All it does is enrich foreign polluters at the expense of American energy providers and families. While you’ll see increased energy bills, higher prices at the gas pump, and the elimination of more jobs—countries like China, Russia, and India will be allowed to pollute with impunity. We shouldn’t be part of any agreement that gives a free pass to the rest of the world.”

Rep. Kevin Hern (R-Okla.): “The Paris Climate Agreement punishes America for the sins of the world, while leaving our worst polluters without so much as a slap on the wrist. The United States has demonstrated massive decreases in emissions over the last decade, including during the Trump Administration. Can China and India say the same? The decision to leave the Agreement was to the benefit of the country and the world – asking the leading polluters on the planet to bear their share of the burden. Under the Obama Administration and now Biden, our foreign relations strategy is largely apologetic rather than showing the strength of leadership that the world needs from the United States. The only way the Paris Climate Agreement can be successful is if we hold other countries to the same standards imposed on us.”

Rep. Michael Cloud (R-Texas): “President Obama first unilaterally entered the U.S. into the Paris Agreement without seeking ratification from the Senate or even conducting an analysis on how much the U.S.’s contribution would cost American taxpayers. When Democrats introduced legislation that would prohibit President Trump from withdrawing, I offered an amendment that would have required the federal government to conduct a cost estimate for our participation in the Paris Climate Agreement. The U.S. shouldn’t be bound to a costly agreement that other countries, like China, are failing to adhere to. This is an irresponsible move on the Biden Administration’s part.”

Rep. Jodey Arrington (R-Texas): “On his first day in office, President Biden caved to the far left’s extreme climate agenda, leaving thousands of hardworking American energy sector employees jobless in the midst of a global pandemic. By re-entering the Paris Climate Agreement, President Biden showed the American people he cares more about placating the climate alarmists than where thousands of energy workers will get their next paycheck and the cost that will be passed down to American consumers. At a time when Americans are struggling to find employment, we should work to create jobs—not destroy them.” 

Rep. Ben Cline (R-Va.): “The Paris Climate Agreement subjects the United States to crippling energy regulations which put our country at a competitive disadvantage and will cost hundreds of thousands of American jobs. Rejoining this agreement does nothing more than give the world’s worst polluters a free pass while restricting the American energy industry."


Rep. Lauren Boebert (R-Colo.): “While Joe Biden is staying warm in the natural-gas heated White House, he’s promoting policies that will leave the rest of America paying higher prices to drive to the store and heat their own homes. While proposals like the Green New Deal and the Paris Agreement work for globalist career politicians, they do not work for everyday Americans who are suffering under burdensome regulations, job-killing policies, and unreliable energy. While John Kerry and Joe Biden shriek about existential threats, this policy is the real existential threat to American energy. Why should we import oil and natural gas from Russia, China, Iran, and other countries and unnecessarily create a national security risk, when we have abundant natural resources here? I will never stop fighting for American energy dominance.”  

Rep. August Pfluger (R-Texas): “Rejoining the Paris Climate Agreement is a huge mistake. With no mechanism to hold countries like China, one of the largest global polluters accountable, this unconstitutional treaty does nothing to save or clean up the planet. Instead, it shackles the United States with job-killing regulations that cost trillions of dollars and imperil our national security.”

Rep. Ronny Jackson (R-Texas): “President Trump acknowledged how burdensome the Paris Climate Agreement is on the American energy sector when he refused to let America be taken advantage of and withdrew from the agreement. It lacked accountability measures and placed a lopsided financial burden on the American people.  President Biden’s decision to formally re-enter the agreement shows his priority is undermining President Trump’s work instead of looking out for American interests. This is clear since he did not renegotiate terms before re-entering the agreement. Importantly, a Paris court found France guilty of failing to meet its own Paris Climate Agreement commitments this month. In fact, most countries who are a part of the agreement are not meeting their goals. President Biden pandered to his environmental base when he aimlessly rejoined, which only benefits the Chinese Communist Party and those on the left who want to destroy American energy jobs. Biden’s America Last agenda is good for liberal politics, but not the American people.”

Rep. Stephanie Bice (R-Okla.): “In the last week in Oklahoma, Texas and other states hit by large winter storms, we’ve seen disastrous results from an over reliance on renewable energy during extreme weather conditions. The further we move away from the natural resources that fuel baseload power across the United States, including coal and natural gas, the more at risk we are placing our electrical grid. Rejoining the Paris Accord will increase the negative impact America’s energy producers have already experienced from the coronavirus and the closing of the Keystone Pipeline project, costing American jobs and small businesses. The accord will require the resurrection of burdensome and costly regulations on the United States while imposing no binding enforcement upon other nations, including China, the world’s largest emitter of CO2. We should instead employ an approach that focuses on bringing jobs and manufacturing back to the United States where emissions are significantly lower than China. Furthermore, we should encourage the domestic energy industry to continue its innovations that have proven to reduce carbon emissions and keep America’s recovery on track.”

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