Boozman, GOP Committee Leaders Continue to Call out Biden Administration’s Lack of Transparency on Social Cost of Greenhouse Gases
“Figures are being marshalled by federal agencies in an attempt to slow or stop the development of energy resources and infrastructure”
May 17 2022
WASHINGTON—U.S. Senator John Boozman (R-AR), ranking member of the Senate Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry Committee, along with the Republican leaders of other key committees are again pressing the Biden administration’s “Interagency Working Group on the Social Cost of Greenhouse Gases” calling on it to improve transparency in its activities. The senators are also seeking information regarding the group’s role in developing and using the “Social Cost of Greenhouse Gases” (SC-GHG) to advance the administration’s environmental agenda.
In light of increasing energy prices and inflation in the U.S., as well as the energy supply crisis in Europe as a result of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, the senators are again asking for certain Working Group documents, additional information on its activities and plans to use the SC-GHG. The administration has relied on an inflated SC-GHG figure to oppose the expansion of natural gas infrastructure and limit areas to be made available for energy production.
“Over six months have passed since our letter, and you have neither acknowledged, nor responded, to our oversight request. The lack of responsiveness is at odds with the Administration’s commitment to transparency and its policy ‘to comply with Congressional requests for information to the fullest extent consistent with constitutional and statutory obligations of the Executive Branch’ which Department of Justice recently reaffirmed,” the members wrote.
The letter is co-signed by Senators Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV), Pat Toomey (R-PA), Lindsey Graham (R-SC), Roger Wicker (R-MS), John Barrasso (R-WY), Mike Crapo (R-ID), Richard Burr (R-NC) and Rob Portman (R-OH).
The Wall Street Journal Editorial Board noted the following on the social cost of greenhouse gases — “[t]he [Biden] Administration’s estimate captured all of the potential harm from carbon emissions globally over three centuries – yes, centuries. They threw in everything from property damage to health harms and war.”
The full letter can be found here.
In November 2021, Boozman and his Republican colleagues requested the Working Group provide its recommendations about planned use of the SC-GHG in federal decision making. Their letter was unacknowledged and unanswered.