Capito, McMorris Rodgers seek details supporting U.S. pledge to reduce GHGs

U.S. Sen. Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV) and U.S. Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-WA) restated their request that the Biden administration provide Congress with the details, analyses and calculations used to support the nationally determined contribution (NDC) target being used to reduce America’s greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions under the Paris Agreement.

“Despite promises of transparency, administration officials have dodged our continued requests during the past months in hearings, letters, calls, and questions for the record,” Sen. Capito and Rep. McMorris Rodgers wrote in a Sept. 9 letter sent to President Joe Biden. “We have yet to be provided with any data or any analysis used or generated to inform the NDC target.” Sen. Capito serves as ranking member of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee, while Rep. McMorris Rodgers is ranking member of the House Energy and Commerce Committee.

The NDC target is part of the United States’ pledge included in a document submitted to the United Nations to reduce national greenhouse gas emissions by roughly 50 percent below 2005 levels by 2030 in accordance with the Paris Agreement, according to their letter, which was also signed by U.S. Sen. Jim Inhofe (R-OK) and U.S. Rep. David McKinley (R-WV).

“While your administration has pledged transparency, it still has not provided any information or analysis explaining the source and impacts of emissions reductions required to meet the NDC targets,” wrote Sen. Capito, Rep. McMorris Rodgers, and their colleagues. “While federal agencies seem to know what existing rules and regulations would help meet this target, full information on how how these regulatory tools will be used nationally to meet the NDC pledge is necessary for congressional deliberation, and for the public to judge the achievability of the target and the regulatory impact it would have on our country.”

The lawmakers requested that President Biden identify and provide them with specific information by Sept. 23, including what information the White House received from each federal agency used to quantify their contributions to meeting the NDC, and documents and communications from the administration’s climate policy experts related to and developed in support of the NDC target, among other items.

“Your administration knows the importance of international accountability and it is essential that you hold it accountable to the same standard,” wrote the lawmakers.