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Most of Obama’s Green Policies Persist at Department of Defense

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The Daily Signal discusses climate change policy within the defense spending bill with Myron Ebell.

As Congress considers green projects in a military spending bill, the Trump administration hasn’t staked out a strong case on whether to roll back the Obama administration’s aggressive push for biofuels, wind, solar, and other renewables in the military.

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This week, the House debated the National Defense Authorization Act for fiscal year 2018. Last month, the Republican-controlled House Armed Services Committee passed an amendment by Rep. Jim Langevin, D-R.I., directing the Defense Department to assess 10 bases in each branch most threatened by climate change, and for the Pentagon to count climate change as a security risk to deal with—even as several government audits in the last two years have found the alternative energy sources haven’t been efficient for the DOD.

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Reps. Scott Perry, R-Pa., and Warren Davidson, R-Ohio, each sponsored their own amendments to strike the Langevin provision. Perry’s proposal would remove the language to save money for the Pentagon, while Davidson’s amendment would strike down a 2015 executive order by President Barack Obama that requires the military to meet emission reduction targets.

However, neither of the Republicans’ amendments will likely make it to the floor despite clearing the rules committee, said Myron Ebell, director for the Center for Energy and the Environment at the Competitive Enterprise Institute.

“There are problems at the Pentagon and in Congress,” Ebell, who served on President Donald Trump’s transition team, told The Daily Signal. “President Trump signed an executive order that got rid of some green energy programs at the Pentagon, but others are left in place.”

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“The Pentagon has bought into climate change because it makes it politically more acceptable to people who wouldn’t normally like the Pentagon,” Ebell said. “Another reason is that it’s another means to enhance the portfolio and receive more funding, even if it’s not part of the essential mission.”

Read the full article at The Daily Signal.