Pelosi Announces Chair Of Climate Change Panel

William Davis | Contributor

House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi has officially tabbed Florida Democratic Rep. Kathy Castor to head the new Select Committee On Climate Change that will begin work after Democrats take the majority on Jan. 3.

Installing the committee has been a top priority for Democrats, and Pelosi has faced pressure from her left flank to nominate a progressive. The liberal congresswoman from Tampa seems to fit those criteria. (RELATED: OPINION: Efforts To Fight Climate Change Are In Trouble)

WASHINGTON, DC - NOVEMBER 28: U.S. House Minority Leader Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) (L) speaks to members of the media as Rep. Joyce Beatty (D-OH) (2nd L), and Rep. Kathy Castor (D-FL) (R) listen at the lobby of Longworth House Office Building November 28, 2018 in Washington, DC. House Democrats have nominated Rep. Nancy Pelosi to run for Speaker of the House for the 116th Congress. (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)

WASHINGTON, DC – NOVEMBER 28: U.S. House Minority Leader Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) (L) speaks to members of the media as Rep. Joyce Beatty (D-OH) (2nd L), and Rep. Kathy Castor (D-FL) (R) listen at the lobby of Longworth House Office Building November 28, 2018 in Washington, DC. House Democrats have nominated Rep. Nancy Pelosi to run for Speaker of the House for the 116th Congress. (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)

“It is with great enthusiasm that I appoint Congresswoman Kathy Castor as the Chair of our new Select Committee on the Climate Crisis,” Pelosi said in a statement. “Congresswoman Castor is a proven champion for public health and green infrastructure, who deeply understands the scope and seriousness of this threat.”

Likely the next Speaker of the House, Pelosi created a similar panel on climate change the last time Democrats were in the majority from 2007-2011. That committee was dissolved after Republicans took power following the 2010 midterms.

WASHINGTON, DC - DECEMBER 20: Rep. Kathy Castor (D-FL) holds up a symbolic piece of coal for the holiday season during a press conference with the Democratic Women’s Working Group on the Children’s Health Insurance Program at the U.S. Capitol December 20, 2017 in Washington, DC. The coal was used to symbolize the Democratic contention that Republican members of Congress need to "drop their partisan CHIP reauthorization and adopt reasonable offsets to ensure nine million children keep their health care." (Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images)

WASHINGTON, DC – DECEMBER 20: Rep. Kathy Castor (D-FL) holds up a symbolic piece of coal for the holiday season during a press conference with the Democratic Women’s Working Group on the Children’s Health Insurance Program at the U.S. Capitol December 20, 2017 in Washington, DC. The coal was used to symbolize the Democratic contention that Republican members of Congress need to “drop their partisan CHIP reauthorization and adopt reasonable offsets to ensure nine million children keep their health care.” (Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images)

Castor’s experience on climate-related issues is extensive. She and fellow Democratic Rep. Charlie Crist wrote an open letter calling for the United Nations to bring their climate change conference to Tampa Bay, Florida, earlier this month. Castor also formed a climate change coalition with the University Of South Florida earlier this year, aimed at developing ideas on combating rising sea levels and flooding.

Castor has represented Florida’s 10th district since 2007. She is also a member of the Energy and Commerce committee.

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