Republicans in the House of Representatives are not only denying climate science – they’re actually blocking the Pentagon from taking any action on it. Earlier this month, the House passed an amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act which bars the Department of Defense from using any funds on to implement or research plans to deal with climate change. Republican Congressman David McKinley, who introduced the legislation, said, “This amendment will prohibit the costs of the President’s climate change policies being forced on the Department of Defense by the Obama Administration.”
However, this amendment blocks much more than the President’s executive orders on climate change. The bill also bars the DOD from spending any money to implement changes suggested by the National Climate Assessment, the IPCC, or the United Nations. Republicans even made sure to block any action on one of the Right’s favorite conspiracy theories – Agenda 21. This legislation forces Pentagon officials to stick their heads in the sand, and pretend that climate change is not a serious concern.
Despite the fact that the Pentagon’s own report warned that extreme weather and rising temperatures bring “conditions that can enable terrorist activity and other forms of violence,” – the DOD won’t be able to do anything to address those threats. Once again, House Republicans have gone too far. Their latest political game may work out great for Big Oil, but it leaves the our nation – and our military – at risk for the real threats associated with climate change. We will need every part of our government to deal with the effects of global warming, and the Pentagon can’t be barred from helping us find climate solutions.