Mr. MORAN. I do rise in opposition to this amendment because it attempts to strip half of the remaining funding for EPA's greenhouse gas registry program. This amendment is part of an effort to ignore what the scientists tell us is the most serious environmental problem of our time, climate change.
Republicans have already passed a bill to repeal a scientific finding that greenhouse gases pose a danger to human health. The underlying bill we're considering says that no stationary source, no matter how large, or how lethal to human health, should ever have to reduce its carbon pollution.
But this amendment goes even further. It says that we should not even bother to find out how much pollution is being put into the air. I guess you could call it the ``ignorance is bliss'' amendment.
What we should be doing is the opposite of what the gentleman is trying to do. The bill already makes a 30 percent cut to the registry program in order to cripple the efforts of EPA with regard to greenhouse gases.
The Greenhouse Gas Reporting Program simply requires the largest sources of carbon pollution, power plants, refineries, and the very largest factories, to tell EPA and the public how much they pollute. If we're ever going to deal responsibly with this pollution that is costing us billions in health care and shortening thousands of lives, we need to know where it is coming from and have some idea of how much is being emitted.
This amendment is yet one more example of putting the profits of industry, and particularly those industries that pollute the air and eventually clog the water, that poison much of our environment, to put their profits ahead of the public interest and the public's health.
We all know that pollution is dangerous to our health. The scientists tell us that, certainly the reputable scientists. Let's allow EPA to fulfill its core responsibility, which is to collect this information and inform the public.
I know our friends on the other side hate regulations because they believe that the Environmental Protection Agency doesn't understand the impact of those regulations on businesses and on the economy and on jobs and so on. EPA's job is to protect the public health, and in doing so, and in encouraging cleaner sources of energy, we will not only protect the public's health, but we will grow this economy, grow it in a more competitive and a healthier way and a far more sustainable manner.
I oppose this amendment vigorously.
At this point, I yield to the gentleman from Kansas, who offered the amendment.
Mr. POMPEO. I thank the gentleman for yielding. I will be very brief.
I certainly care deeply about clean air, so do all the businesses in Kansas, so do all the agriculture people. We want clean water, but we know how to do it and we're doing it.
You said this was the ``ignorance is bliss'' amendment. I would prefer to call it the ``jobs are a good thing'' amendment.
When things get mischaracterized--I'm not suggesting we abolish this. There is still $6.2 million available for the Greenhouse Gas Registry. That's as much as was available in 2009.
This is a simple, modest amendment that many on your side voted for when I offered it before, and I hope many of them will continue to do that.
I thank you for yielding.
Mr. MORAN. I was happy to yield.
Reclaiming my time, it just seems to me that more information, accurate information, should not be a threat. Isn't it appropriate to let the public know--in fact, to let lawmakers know who might need to respond--how lethal is the pollution? How substantial is the pollution? What's the composition of the pollution coming from the very largest polluters? What are we doing to our people? What are we doing to our environment? What are the sources of much of the billions of dollars that we're spending
in health care, twice as much as any other country spends on a per capita basis?
So all we're trying to do here is to have a registry--information. That ought not be threatening.
This amendment should be defeated.
Mr. Chairman, I yield back the balance of my time.
Ms. JACKSON LEE of Texas. There is no doubt, Mr. Young, that you are the renowned expert on Alaska. So I don't rise to counter that. And in fact, I come from the other open, wild State that likes their own self-determination, and they just associated you with the State of Texas.
I remind my colleagues that there is water in Virginia, there's water in Massachusetts, and there's water all along. But I rise to support the gentleman's amendment because frankly, the last time I talked to the very important Coast Guard, they're short on money. Frankly, I want the Coast Guard to be in the port of Houston doing their job as it relates to protecting the coastline of America from terrorists. They are involved in that. They are not, in essence, an agency that can just expand its
I would just raise the question. I think the gentleman from Washington was very engaging and cooperative by saying how can we work this out.
My interpretation is, in opposing the language that's in the bill and supporting Mr. Dicks, is that we have, in essence, a legislative earmark, and that means that all of us can rise up and try to solve our problems in that way.
I would like to get back to regular order.
And I cite for all of you just another example. We've got a legislative earmark when one of our Republican colleagues has decided to shut down the FAA. That's an example.
And lost in the doing of that is $2.5 billion in construction projects, 87,000 American construction jobs, 3,000 FAA aviation engineers furloughed, safety analysts, career professionals in 35 States and in my own city of Houston. I want to get on the floor and put an amendment on the floor to get that Member out of the business of stopping the FAA from doing its work--$200 million per week is being lost.
Nobody is saying anything because we're also not doing regular order by fooling around with the debt ceiling. Nobody can come together and act like adults and say, Let's just raise the debt ceiling so the American people can go on with their business.
Now we've got a Member that says ``my way or the highway'' and shutting down the FAA. You can't run the government like this.
And I think the message of the amendment that is on the floor is not that we don't respect Members' personal knowledge of their States, it's [Page: H5609]
just that we can't go willy nilly and change laws just for isolated incidences.
And I apologize to Mr. Wild, but you can see I'm pretty agitated about a situation where we're quietly allowing the FAA not to work. And as a member of the Homeland Security Committee, who knows what danger is around because the FAA is not functioning? Who knows what jeopardy we're putting for seniors and students and families and people trying to buy a home because we're fooling around with the debt ceiling?
So I just think we're in a pattern here. Do what you want to do and forget the heck of the American people and forget that we live in a big country and that we should be for all of the people. And if we need safety on our waterways, we need to find a way to work through our issues. I don't like the way individuals were handled. I agree on that issue.
But I certainly don't like the way we're handling our business with the debt ceiling when we are literally putting ourselves under jeopardy. And I encourage the President to do anything he needs to do to save the American people and to be able to move forward so that we don't lose all of our resources and opportunities for the Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security recipients of America. And I hope he stands up and recognizes this is a ridiculous position to be in when the FAA is not even functioning.
And my Bush Intercontinental Airport can't even continue doing its construction work, and the people who need the work are thrown out on the streets because they can't work because one lone Member wants to get up and talk about the FAA and foolishness about not protecting small airports and not allowing our airport employees or our employees such as air traffic controllers and others to be able to confer about the quality of work issues.
So I would just suggest that you might be able to find a solution, Mr. Young. I know you know all of the issues about that. We have a lot of water from where I come from. I think Mr. Dicks has put forth a perfect question and then an answer to the idea of whether or not your amendment or language would have a far-reaching impact beyond Mr. Wild and the unfortunate behavior of two individuals that I understand may not be here.
Let's look at this holistically, as we need to look at this Nation. Let's come together as adults representing the American people.
I thank the gentleman for the time. I ask support for Mr. DICKS' amendment.
I yield back the balance of my time.
ANNOUNCEMENT BY THE ACTING CHAIR
The Acting CHAIR. Members are again reminded to direct their remarks to the Chair and not to others.
The question is on the amendment offered by the gentleman from Washington (Mr. Dicks).
The question was taken; and the Acting Chair announced that the noes appeared to have it.
Mr. MARKEY. I move to strike the requisite number of words.
The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Massachusetts is recognized for 5 minutes.