Washington Watch: How will energy, climate change and EVs feature in the first Republican debate?

by | Aug 23, 2023 | Stock Market

Republican presidential candidates taking the debate stage Wednesday night have questioned the severity of climate change, with at least one White House contender calling global warming a “hoax” in a summer that saw wildfire smoke and extreme heat stifle large swaths of the country. Read: What is a heat dome? There’s one roasting Texas and the Midwest

Other GOP candidates among the eight tapped for the party’s first primary debate hail from states that promote greener but perennially subsidized biofuels as alternatives to gasoline, itself also boosted by government incentives. These candidates are pushing for a diverse portfolio of domestically produced energy, including sticking with natural gas
while embracing the migration to climate-friendlier, but still growing, sources like wind, solar
and nuclear to power U.S. electricity. Read: Here are the Republicans running for president, as their first debate looms Most of the party’s candidates and their congressional brethren have made it clear that if Republicans take back the White House, or perhaps more importantly, secure a congressional majority in 2024, President Joe Biden’s climate-focused federal spending bill, the Inflation Reduction Act, could be stripped to a shell of its former self. They’ve made this pledge even though the bulk of the $360 billion in federal spending outlined for renewable energy, electric-vehicle promotion and more, is largely filtering into states that are Republican strongholds. Related: Climate winners and losers as the Inflation Reduction Act hits 1-year anniversaryDeSantis says no One exception when it comes to IRA money, Florida governor and GOP presidential hopeful Ron DeSantis rejected $377 million in clean-energy funding for Florida from Biden’s IRA and the separate bipartisan Infrastructure Law.  DeSantis in recent polls runs a distant second behind 2024 frontrunner, former President Donald Trump. Trump himself has called climate change “bullshit” and has cast doubt on climate science since at least 2010, claiming the “science doesn’t know” about climate change. Trump is not a participant in Wednesday’s o …

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