Center for American Progress Action

RELEASE: The Anti-Science Climate Denier Caucus: 114th Congress Edition
Press Release

RELEASE: The Anti-Science Climate Denier Caucus: 114th Congress Edition

CAP Action releases updated analysis showing 170 Republican climate change deniers in Congress.

Washington, D.C. — The Center for American Progress Action Fund released its analysis on the anti-science climate denier caucus today, showing that more than 56 percent of Republicans in the 114th Congress deny or question the science behind human-caused climate change. Even though more than 97 percent of climate scientists agree that climate change is occurring and that it is driven by human activity, 53 percent of House Republicans and 72 percent of Senate Republicans deny the occurrence of human-caused climate change.

Just yesterday, Sen. Mark Kirk (R-IL) joined the crowd when, according to E&E Daily, he dismissed the reality that greenhouse gases are linked to climate change, citing the history of Greenland. Sen. Kirk’s statement comes on the heels of what will likely end up being the hottest year on record.

“The new Congress brings little improvement in the number of Republicans who openly rejected the scientific reality of climate change,” said Noreen Nielsen, Vice President of Communications and Advocacy at the Center for American Progress Action Fund. “The ‘not a scientist’ crowd of 2014 candidates leads the crowd of newcomers, but long-time deniers such as Sen. James Inhofe (R-OK) are still around and ignoring the bulk of scientific research. Their position has prevented Congress from taking meaningful action on climate change for years, putting our health and economy at risk.”

The 39 climate deniers in the Senate have taken more than $28 million in donations from the coal, oil, and gas industries, while the 131 House climate deniers have taken more than $35 million. In contrast, all other members of Congress combined have taken less from the coal, oil, and gas industries than just the House climate deniers.

With so many climate deniers in Congress, it should be no surprise that the committees working on issues related to climate change are full of them, and their priorities for the 114th Congress appear to undermine action at every turn. Thirteen out of 21 Republican members of the House Committee on Science, Space, and Technology—or 62 percent—reject the science behind human-caused global warming, joined by 67 percent—or 21 out of 31 Republican members—of the House Energy and Commerce Committee. In addition to Sen. Inhofe, 10 out of 11—or 91 percent—of Republicans on the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee have said that climate change is not happening or that humans do not cause it.

“It is pretty clear that hundreds of Republican climate deniers in Congress are focused on the bottom lines of some of their biggest contributors and not the health of Americans and their families,” Nielsen said. “The impacts of climate change are hurting communities, cost Americans billions of dollars every year, and are only getting worse. It is time to stop ignoring science and putting our communities at risk.”

See the full analysis here.

For more information, contact Benton Strong at [email protected] or 202.481.8142.