Jan 29, 2020

House Democrats show more climate cards with infrastructure package

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

Senior House Democrats are on the cusp of unveiling a five-year, $760 billion infrastructure package that "places a major emphasis on climate change," Politico reported Tuesday night.

What's next: Democrats are slated to discuss the plan in their caucus meeting later this morning, per Politico and Roll Call.

Context: It comes the day after Energy and Commerce Committee Democrats unveiled draft legislation aimed at reaching net-zero U.S. emissions by 2050.

  • The draft circulated yesterday adds details to a skeleton of the plan released earlier this month.

Why it matters: The two moves provide more clarity to some of the party's positioning.

  • Per Politico: "House Transportation Chairman Peter DeFazio (D-Ore.) says the plan will be a radical departure from highway-focused transportation bills and will put clean energy and climate 'resilience' at the center."
  • The plan would replace the current 5-year, $305 billion transportation package that expires Sept. 30.

Go deeper: Climate change’s surprise twist

Go deeper

Bipartisan House duo explore "clean energy standard"

Illustration: Rebecca Zisser/Axios

A bipartisan House duo is floating a new plan that's both a throwback idea and a sign of today's climate politics.

Driving the news: Rep. David McKinley (R-W.Va.) and Rep. Kurt Schrader (D-Ore.) want to require utilities to greatly cut carbon emissions by mid-century.

Where top 2020 candidates stand on climate policy and the Green New Deal

Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) at a rally May 13. Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

The Green New Deal resolution, introduced in February by Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) and Sen. Ed Markey (D-Mass.), has helped cement climate change as a real topic in the 2020 presidential race.

What's happening: More Democratic candidates have pitched climate change policy that goes beyond the Green New Deal, largely to prepare for events like CNN's "climate crisis" town hall. The GND — which is more of a call to arms than a strict policy proposal — outlines a 10-year mobilization plan to move the country toward a 100% carbon-free power system and a decarbonized economy.

Go deeperArrowUpdated Feb 5, 2020 - Politics & Policy

The widening partisan divide on climate change

Reproduced from Pew Research Center U.S. Politics and Policy; Chart: Axios Visuals

The persistent partisan divide on climate change is getting wider, per a Pew Research Center survey.

The big picture: Since 2015, Democrats have become increasingly convinced (now at 78%) that climate change should be a top federal priority — while that same view among Republicans has remained relatively flat (now at 21%)

Go deeper: Climate change's surprise twist