House Republicans Disarm the United States in the Face of the Climate Crisis and Slash Funds for Clean Water and National Parks
Bill includes the lowest level the EPA has received since 1991, cuts funding for the arts, and prohibits Smithsonian from highlighting the contributions of American Latinos in U.S. history and culture.
WASHINGTON — House Republicans continued their aggressive anti-environment pro-pollution stance by passing a funding bill with a crippling 39 percent cut to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and policy provisions that will endanger public health, strain the economy, and increase costs. The bill also slashes funding for arts programs and prohibits funding for the new National Museum of the American Latino and the operation of the existing Molina Family Latino Gallery, which will prevent the Smithsonian from highlighting the contributions of American Latinos in United States History and culture.
The 2024 Interior, Environment, and Related Agencies funding bill includes $25.4 billion, which is $13.4 billion below the 2023 level, a cut of 35 percent.
- Hinders the U.S. response to the Climate Crisis and fails to address the growing number and severity of extreme weather events by cutting efforts to reduce carbon emissions and community resiliency programs.
- Slashes funding for national parks, threatening Americans’ ability to enjoy public lands.
- Exacerbates environmental discrimination against rural and poor communities by defunding environmental justice initiatives.
- Promotes dirty energy by requiring fossil fuels lease sales while prohibiting growth in clean energy projects.
- Hastens ecosystem decline by allowing harmful and dirty mining activities and by removing Endangered Species Act protections for numerous species.
- Incites hate and discrimination by prohibiting funds for advancing diversity, equity, inclusion, and accessibility, censoring commemoration of LGTBQI+ pride, and prohibiting the Smithsonian Institution from highlighting the contributions of American Latinos in U.S. history and culture.
“In less than three weeks, the federal government will once again be on the brink of catastrophe thanks to Republicans’ refusal to negotiate with Democrats and the Senate on a full Appropriations package. Instead, House Republicans are wasting time on bills that violate the terms of the Fiscal Responsibility Act of 2023,” Interior, Environment, and Related Agencies Appropriations Subcommittee Ranking Member Chellie Pingree (D-ME-01) said. “The harmful Interior appropriations bill Republicans passed tonight completely debilitates America’s ability to address the climate crisis and hobbles the agencies within its jurisdiction. The majority of Americans support becoming carbon neutral by 2050 and they support prioritizing the development of renewable energy sources and preserving biodiversity for the benefit of future generations. The austere and irresponsible cuts in this bill do not align with American values.”
Congresswoman Pingree’s remarks as prepared for delivery are here.
“When it comes to caring for the environment – ensuring our air is safe to breathe, our water is safe to drink, and we are resilient in a changing climate – House Republicans take the side of the most egregious polluters and climate-deniers,” Appropriations Committee Ranking Member Rosa DeLauro (D-CT-03) said. “Their 2024 Interior funding bill damages our public lands, promotes dirty energy, jeopardizes biodiversity, and disarms the United States in the face of the climate crisis. It slashes funding for the arts and prohibits the Smithsonian from highlighting the contributions of Latinos in U.S. history and culture by not making it possible to move forward with the National Museum of the American Latino. Continuing to consider these extreme Republican bills only brings us closer to a shutdown. We continue to waste our time debating partisan policies instead of coming together to write bills that can earn the bipartisan, bicameral support needed to become law. It is past time for House Republicans to meet House Democrats at the negotiating table.”
Congresswoman DeLauro’s remarks as prepared for delivery are here.
The Republican bill cuts programs in the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) by $9.4 billion. These cuts include $7.8 billion from the EPA’s Greenhouse Gas Reduction Fund which supports investments for disadvantaged communities and the creation of high-paying jobs. Republicans cut $1.4 billion intended to address environmental health impacts in underserved communities. They also slash hundreds of millions in additional funding for the Department of the Interior (DOI) and Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ).
Key provisions of the bill can be found here. The text of the legislation, before action on the House Floor, is available here. The accompanying report is available here. Information on Community Project Funding in the bill is here.