Rep. McEachin Introduces Bicameral Pollution Transparency Act

October 5, 2017
Press Release

WASHINGTON – Congressman A. Donald McEachin (VA-04) introduced bicameral legislation that will require agencies to fully consider the impact of greenhouse gas emissions.

“We already see more severe droughts, stronger hurricanes, widespread wildfires, and rising sea levels. There are clear and undeniable costs of climate change and greenhouse gas emissions – we have had enough,” said Congressman Donald McEachin. “The next generation will have healthier lives and a stronger, more sustainable economy because of this bill.”

Congressman McEachin introduced the House version of the Pollution Transparency Act. Senator Michael Bennet (D-CO) introduced the Senate version.

“We cannot stand by idly as the Trump administration blatantly disregards broad scientific consensus and economics,” said Senator Michael Bennet. “This irresponsible ploy to upend years of progress is playing fast and loose with the health of our nation's children. Although we cannot avoid all of the effects of climate change, we can create market certainty about how much those effects harm our children and our economy. This legislation would ensure the federal government runs a transparent process-grounded in science, with public and industry input-to quantify those effects.”

Congressman McEachin introduced this bill to ensure that federal agencies calculate a per-unit, dollar-value cost of carbon dioxide, methane, and nitrous oxide emissions, and make those figures a part of cost-benefit analyses of proposed policy actions. This legislation guarantees those figures will be derived from a scientific, evidence-based process and used consistently across government.

“We need to ensure that the federal government is accurate and consistent in calculating the price of greenhouse gases when issuing regulatory and substantial procurement decisions,” said Rep. McEachin. “We can best address the root-cause of climate change by taking an intellectually honest and evidence-based approach to quantify its impact. This method will allow us to build a more resilient infrastructure and leave a better Earth for our children and our children’s children.”

The Pollution Transparency Act will also require regular reviews and updates of those costs to responsibly account for the change in costs over time. This bill counters a directive from the Trump Administration to agencies to ignore existing metrics-uprooting years of progress and economic certainty-and an attempt made yesterday by Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke in the revised BLM methane rule to change his department's metric without any prior consultation or transparency.

Click here for bill text.


Congressman Donald McEachin is the co-founder of the United for Climate and Environmental Justice task force and a member of the Democratic Leader’s Environmental Messaging Team.


Contact: Jamitress Bowden
(202) 225-6365