House Debt Ceiling Plan Polluted with Special Interest Favors

“Polluting special interests know the Keystone XL tar sands pipeline can’t pass a fair national interest review and can’t pass as a stand-alone bill, so they’re trying to take America’s economy hostage to deliver Canadian oil to the international market.” 

09-25-2013 // Miles Grant

Capitol building

Later today the House is expected to release a debt ceiling package that includes a litany of attacks on conservation.

"Polluting special interests know the Keystone XL tar sands pipeline can’t pass a fair national interest review and can’t pass as a stand-alone bill, so they’re trying to take America’s economy hostage to deliver Canadian oil to the international market," said Adam Kolton, executive director of the National Wildlife Federation’s National Advocacy Center. "Drill past Keystone and this debt ceiling plan is a polluter wish list of favors too unpopular and politically toxic to pass on their own. Gutting conservation protections would do nothing to cut the deficit while hurting America’s wildlife, clean air and water, and public health."

Poll after poll shows voters don’t support attacks on conservation protections. A June Georgetown Climate Center poll showed 87 percent of Americans, including 78 percent of Republicans, support Environmental Protection Agency action to limit industrial carbon pollution.

According to NWF’s 2012 sportsmen poll:

  • Seven in ten sportsmen (69 percent) agree the U.S. should reduce its carbon emissions that contribute to global warming and threaten fish and wildlife habitat.
  • Given a choice between protecting America’s public lands and prioritizing the production of oil, gas and coal, half (49 percent) of hunters and anglers want to protect public lands and just 35 percent choose fossil fuel production.
  • Conservation is just as important as gun rights, according to nearly half (47 percent) of sportsmen polled. Another 13 percent believe conservation issues are even more important than gun rights.

According to NWF’s 2012 post-election voter poll:

  • Asked to pick the highest priority to help solve America's energy challenges, independents favor wind and solar over fossil fuels by a 4-to-1 margin – 48 percent pick renewable energy while just 12 percent select the Keystone XL tar sands pipeline and only 11 percent prioritize more oil and gas drilling on America’s public lands.
  • Seven in ten voters (69 percent) are greatly or somewhat worried about the growing cost and risks of extreme weather disasters fueled by climate change. Six in ten (58 percent) of Tea Party sympathizers are greatly or somewhat worried, showing a connection between climate action and fiscal responsibility.

 

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