Now that the 116th Congress is underway, it appears that climate change will get more attention than it has in recent years. In addition to the Select Committee on the Climate Crisis, the chairman of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, Rep. Frank Pallone, is adding climate change to the focus of one of his subcommittees. Pallone also promised to make climate change the topic of the committee’s first hearing.
The difference between the two committees is this: The Committee on the Climate Crisis is not a “standing” committee. It does not have the power to write legislation or to subpoena witnesses. Pallone’s group is a standing committee that has those powers. PCAP has sent a long list of suggestions to both chairpersons about what their committees might do to lay the groundwork for concrete climate action if there is a more hospitable Senate and White House after the 2020 election.