New estimates show the federal government will spend nearly twice as much fighting global warming this year than on U.S. border security.
The White House reported to House Republicans that there are 18 federal agencies engaged in global warming activities in 2013, funding a wide range of programs, including scientific research, international climate assistance, incentivizing renewable energy technology and subsidies to renewable energy producers. Global warming spending is estimated to cost $22.2 billion this year, and $21.4 billion next year.
At the same time, the federal government will spend nearly $12 billion on customs and border enforcement this year.
Obama’s climate agenda has attracted criticism from congressional Republicans who have been hammering the administration over the accountability and transparency of its global warming efforts.
Republicans on the Energy and Commerce Committee have been calling on the heads of major federal agencies to testify on global warming activities. So far, only the heads of the Energy Department and the Environmental Protection Agency have opted to testify in front of the House.
“With billions of dollars currently being spent annually on climate change activities, Congress and the public should understand the scope of what the federal government is doing, how the billions of dollars are being spent, and what it will accomplish,” said Kentucky Republican Rep. Ed Whitfield. “Anyone who believes the committee ought to be focusing its attention on climate change related issues should be standing with us to get these answers.”
Earlier this summer, the Senate held a hearing to highlight the immediate impacts of global warming. However, Senate Republicans released a report ahead of the hearing that rejected many of the claims made by scientists, politicians and activists about rising global temperatures.
“Over nearly four decades, numerous predictions have had adequate time to come to fruition, providing an opportunity to analyze and compare them to today’s statistics,” reads the report from Republicans on the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee.
Republicans have also taken aim at the EPA’s efforts to cut U.S. carbon dioxide emissions. The agency will be imposing emissions caps on new and existing power plants across the country, which significantly hurts the coal industry.
“The American public should be deeply troubled to learn that EPA is actively working to increase energy prices based on predicted global temperature increases without first undertaking efforts to determine if temperatures are actually increasing to the extent predicted by the climate models they are using,” reads the Senate Republicans’ report.
The Obama administration recently declared that the country has moved beyond debating whether or not global warming is a threat, and instead, should be debating what can be done about the issue.
“We have turned a corner on that issue,” said Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz in a recent speech. “We are — including in our Congress — really past the issue of whether we need to respond.”
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