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House Republicans to introduce climate change strategy with eye on midterms

House Republicans are preparing to release a six-part strategy to try to tame surging gasoline prices and to combat climate change that calls for increasing production of all types of energy and sets no greenhouse gas targets.

The plan to be released Thursday is the product of an “energy, climate, and conservation task force” created by top House Republican Kevin McCarthy last year that he tasked with devising a policy agenda to address climate change should Republicans capture the House in the 2022 midterm elections.

“We are creating a clear coherent energy strategy that returns the U.S. to an emissions reduction trajectory as opposed to what we are seeing under the Biden administration, which is failing every test, whether it be affordability, emissions or security,” Rep. Garret Graves (R-La.), the chair of the 17-member task force, told POLITICO in an exclusive interview previewing the plan.

The task force report, shared with POLITICO, contains six pillars: “Unlock America’s Resources,” “Beat China and Russia,” “Let America Build,” “Build Resilient Communities,” “American Innovation” and “Conservation with a Purpose.”

The report, however, is also notable in what it does not include. House Republicans continue to resist setting a specific emissions reduction target. They oppose policies to reduce fossil fuel use, including regulations, taxes, or mandates. And Graves said House Republicans, unlike at least some GOP counterparts in the Senate, are skeptical of the government extending and expanding clean energy tax credits that the renewable industry says are critical to helping them deploy zero-carbon power at the scale needed to address climate change.

“Are we open to looking at strategies that nudge technologies to economic sustainability? Yes. But a lot of that can be achieved through R&D partnering with innovators,” said Graves, who represents an oil and gas district experiencing sea level rise and is currently the ranking GOP member of the Democratic-led Select Committee on the Climate Crisis.


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