Chamber of Commerce continues to fight climate progress

By JP Leous

With healthcare off the front burner, a window of opportunity is now open on Capitol Hill to address another issue inherently linked to the health of our families, economy, and planet: clean energy and protecting our natural resources from the effects of carbon pollution. However, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce continues to play the unfortunate roll of climate chump, rather than climate champ.

You may recall that last year a number of major corporations including Apple Inc., Exelon, PG&E, and PNM Resources left the Chamber due to its climate policy. Well, the Chamber is at it again—suing the EPA over its scientific finding that heat-trapping gasses endanger our health and wellbeing.

One could maybe overlook this attack on the Clean Air Act if one thought the Chamber was acting in good faith as a longtime champion for clean energy and sustainable business, but that’s just not the case. To be fair, the Chamber’s website includes its “core principles” on climate policy- but it reads like a well-polled collection of pro-industry catch phrases rather than principles designed to help the American economy emerge as a sustainable leader in a global clean energy economy. Notably absent from the Chamber’s vision of energy and climate policy are any science-based carbon pollution reduction goals nor calls for protecting the health of our natural resources.

To be clear, countries and companies are only as healthy as the resources upon which they rely. This is especially frustrating, given the Chamber’s tremendous power and influence across corporate and political spheres. Instead of seeing the climate crisis as an opportunity for the American economy to face head on and beat through our unique creativity and entrepreneurial spirit, the Chamber fights meaningful progress with a steal grip on the unsustainable practices of the past. 

What to do? Say what you will about the Tea Party movement, but they do one thing well: they take it to the streets, to the Halls of Congress and to living rooms across the country.

What would happen if hard-working Americans who care about our economic and environmental health got loud and got active? What could clean energy policy look like if the Senate knew their jobs were on the line, and polluting companies knew their profits were in peril if we didn’t get a bill that matches what science clearly calls for?

Seem far-fetched? It’s only as far-etched if our willingness to be part of the solution is tempered by an easier instinct: inaction.

J.P. Leous is a climate policy advisor for The Wilderness Society.

73 comments

LMj Sunshine
James Merit4 years ago

Thank you.

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LMj Sunshine
James Merit4 years ago

Thank you.

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LMj Sunshine
James Merit4 years ago

Thank you.

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LMj Sunshine
James Merit4 years ago

Thank you.

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Beng Kiat Low
low beng kiat7 years ago

Thanks

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lori conley
lori c7 years ago

With overpopulation of this planet and not enough jobs for them, I worry about this getting passed as the gov't is usually pro industry. It is a shame. There are only so many people we can fit on this little marble called Plant Earth before we destroy it! So very sad!

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Aletta Kraan
Aletta Kraan7 years ago

Noted , thanks .

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Bella Black
Bella Black8 years ago

Lets fight for this cause...it is important. We need fresh air to live

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Sexy T.
Sexy Teoh8 years ago

Help our enviroment, stop global warming. Thank you.

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gerlinde p.
gerlinde p8 years ago

thanks for the article

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