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tv   Washington Journal Garret Graves  CSPAN  October 27, 2021 11:29am-12:00pm EDT

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and small. charter is connecting us. >> smarter communications supports c-span as a public service along with these other television providers, giving you a front row seat to democracy. announcer: washington unfiltered, c-span in your pocket. download c-span now today. >> with us this morning is the top republican, garrett graves on the select committee on the climate crisis and also on the transportation and infrastructure committee and we thank for you being with us. i want to start with your views on climate change, what are they? guest: look, i think there's no question we're seeing a changing planet and i think there's no question we have a obligation to chart a course for clean energy future but it's also important for us to remember that this isn't something that we can solve solely in the puns.
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solely in the united states. we have to work with the community. the united states has led the world in reducing emissions. we've reduced emissions more than the next 12 emissions reducing countries combined. during that period as we've led the world in reducing emissions and bringing energy solution to the table, for every one ton of emissions we've reduced china increased by four. as we continue out of the quandary there will be a 50% increase on global demand moving forward. we've got to be aware of that and make sure the solutions we make available, that they're abundant and affordable because some of these third world countries are not going to take up on affordable and more
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expensive energy solutions, so really, really thoughtful process forward really deliberate in making sure that it's based upon u.s. resources to where we can continue leading the world in energy innovation in solving this problem we're facing. host: the president is headed at the end of the week to the u.s. climate change summit and you're going as well with a group of republicans. what will be your role? guest: it's important for us to show we have a obligation with the global community to help develop energy solutions, clean energy solutions and chart a path forward. but we're not going to do it in a way as some have proposed, that is going to kneecap the u.s. economy or put restrictions or mandates just on the united states that would undermine our economy and american opportunity
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while you're going to have other countries like china go out there and continue increasing emissions or countries like russia that are going to be building pipelines in the communities to bring dirtier energy solutions like their gas compared to american gas, which has a much lower emissions profile. but there are significant differences between how we believe we should get there versus some of the policies they are pushing and also differences in the world we see the united states playing versus the larger global community. we ought to move in lockstep and not simply give a pass to countries like china, russia, and others that are not really complying with any type of long-term reduction in emissions. host: for our audience, your turn to call with questions or comments about climate change to the congressman. republicans, (202) 748-8001. democrats, (202) 748-8000. independents, (202) 748-8002.
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send a text with your first name, city, and state, as well. yesterday, the social spending plan expected to include at least $500 billion for climate, that was said yesterday what do you know about it? what do you think of the price tag? guest: it is interesting because the white house came out initially and there were a lot of mandates, a lot of choosing technological winners and losers, really more of a stick type approach. it appears what they are doing now, because of senator manchin and other folks that i think are candidly sticking to the science a little bit more, they appeared to be taking more of a carrot type approach, where they will try and offer grants and build on what republicans have done with tax incentives to try and in clean energy future, move in a direction of sequestration type technologies to sequester some of the greenhouse gases. so this is really more of an
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approach on building on some of the incredible progress we made in the 2017 tax bill, incentivizing the sequestration of greenhouse gases and a tax provision wilting upon some of the bipartisan work we did -- tax provision, building upon some of the bipartisan work we did in 2020, the appropriations bill, which was actually with a republican president and many republican members of congress, making sure the the research and develop an agenda is focused on american clean energy sources, clean energy solutions. so i really think it is a better direction. however, it is amazing that they are going to try and put it $500 billion, anywhere from one third to one quarter of the entire package, but i think overall the package is excessive spending. they proposed nearly $12 trillion in spending this year. and with the debts already approaching $30 trillion, this is just out of hand.
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we have to be more thoughtful and targeted about the limited resources we have. otherwise, we will really challenge our children and their children's future. host: that price tech reported, $500 billion, far off from the roughly $600 billion, and the bill was expected to cost $3.5 trillion. the associated press reporting a couple days ago that emerging proposals would expand grants and loans in agriculture and industrial sectors to help shift to clean energy, provide with fewer emissions. and there would be new tax credits for taxing solar, wind, and other renewable energy sources. the official says momentum was building as the group coalesced around his new ideas. congressman, it does not sound like you would vote for the overall package. but if this was standalone, would you vote for it? guest: look, i have read that story and talk to some other members involved, and candidly, there are not enough details at this point.
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shifting from trying to use mandates, restrictions, picking technological winners and losers, shifting from that type of approach to more of an incentive type approach, i certainly do welcome. historically, i will give an example why that has worked better. president obama put something in place and set an objective of reducing emissions in the power sector by about 32% by 2030. but it shows technological winners and losers, used more of a stick type approach. president trump said, look, we're not going to choose technological winners and losers, we are going to let innovators innovate. he removed the restrictions and even the targets. despite that, in the 2019, 11 years early, we exceeded that emissions reduction goal. let me say it again, not with restrictions, mandates, or penalties, just by letting innovators and evade.
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americans have been incredible in their ability to innovate our way out of problems, and it is a perfect example -- history has shown this over and over again, how that type of approach works better. and i think perhaps with senator manchin's presser and using a little history and evidence, you have seen a little bit of evolution with the democrats, but i still think the overall bill is incredibly problematic, spending too much money, and there is nothing in america's history of success that shows expanding social wealth programs is the right direction to go. host: a call from west chester, ohio, republican. hi, deborah. caller: thank you for taking my call. my concern with our climate is that we have -- we do not have, as a public, an understanding of all of the rare minerals, all the minerals, in our cell phones and in our laptops, etc.
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as a result, china has 44 million metric tons of rare earth minerals. afghanistan is one of the richest nations in the world. and we are not mining rare earth minerals in the united states. i think we have one in wyoming. so what we're doing is sunday we're going to wake up and say, oh, you mean those euros that are all outside of the united states are what we have to have to fuel the green new deal, etc.? and the american people are just not informed about that. it would be like driving a car, not understanding that a lot of our gases coming from the middle east. guest: thanks for the comment there, the question, the observation. you are exactly right. look, this is why we have to be very careful about how we proceed. folks can say we are going to get rid of oil and gas, but what are we trading it for? for mining in the congo and
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china, where there are no standards, trading it for slave labor and child labor which has been utilized to mine these.meanwhile , we have these exact resources in the u.s., and we are prohibiting access, preventing mining. last november, we were energy independent in the united states, and we go to shifting trillions of dollars in economic activity and becoming dependent on china, just like we saw at the onset of the coronavirus, them buying back all of the masks and gloves and other things sent around the world and then significant increasing the price and selling it back to countries like the united states. we cannot allow a country with those types of values to have that type of leverage over the united states, from an energy security perspective, economic security, or national security. it is the wrong direction. we can maintain our energy independence in the united states by simply continuing to innovate. we have led the world in
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reducing emissions. so i agree with you 100%. we have got to move forward in an america based clean energy future, not one that plays into the hands of russia and china. i think, unfortunately, this administration is leading into that right now. host: battle creek, michigan, democratic caller. go ahead. caller: yeah, i think we have to recognize we're already into the global warming crisis. i keep looking at the drought out west. almost half the country is in drought. it has gone through the entire summer. we have had wildfires, droughts. the water levels in the reservoirs are going down. we are going to have to pay. i will give this to the republicans, their economic minds, we are going to have to be paying for crop losses, flooding, hurricanes.
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i just wanted to ask about -- so we are in the crisis now. and right now we are at 420 parts per million carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, probably 100 parts per million up from the average. so we are already in a very bad situation. i want to know, do we have a carbon budget? are we going to try to reduce -- i would ask the congressman, what is the annual carbon pollution, how many metric tons of carbon dioxide does the united states put into the atmosphere every year? host: ok. we will try and get an answer. guest: you bring up a really important point, and i think it is something all of us need to take into consideration. look, we have had scientific expertise from all over the world that have acknowledged united states today could cut every bit of greenhouse gas emissions that we emit, every
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bit of it, and it would have virtually zero impact on the climate, zero. you could cut every bit of emissions globally today, all of it, and you are still going to have this momentum building continuing to move in this direction of climate changing. so the first thing we have got to recognize is something we can all come to agree on, does not matter where you are ideologically, which is making adjustments and resiliency. we made record investments in resiliency during the last administration. we made investments to make sure our communities can sustain changes. i represent south louisiana, where we are having some of the fastest levels of c rise, hurricane impacts, and we are having these new rain bomb events were, in may of this year, we had like 12 inches of rain come down in the half of a day, just incredible events.
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one thing, let me say it again, that we can all agree on, and it is a fiscally conservative approach, is making investments in our communities, and flood protection, coastal protection, and we have to be smart with management, making sure we are not being a responsible about allowing for these disasters to be worse than they are. step two, if we're going to come in and continue this trajectory in the united states of leading the world in reducing global emissions and we are going to have china increased four -- four times for everyone 10 we reduce, then what is the point? so i think it is really important, and secretary kerry has worked in an international format, but the paris accords he is celebrating results in increasing of global emissions, including china, that is emitting no more than every developed country in the world combined, and it will increase another 50% over the next 10
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years, absolutely the wrong direction. it was a flawed agreement to agree with -- to begin with, and we have to hold the international community's feet to the fire. host: when folks talk about proposals, grants or loans, for the agriculture industry, what are they specifically looking at? should there be a review of what crops we grow in this country and why, and would that help with climate change? guest: it is a great question. when you talk about innovation, a lot of folks have been on the sidelines, and looking at how to improve the management of our natural resources is one of the greatest opportunities we have in the u.s. republican leader kevin mccarthy and congressman bruce westerman of arkansas have proposed this trillion trees initiative, going around the world and planting trees. trees sequester greenhouse gases, natural solution. so farming is that another opportunity. what types of crops or
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replanting? even things like killing the soil, we're losing those emissions. in louisiana, we continue to have coastal land loss or erosion, releasing methane or other emissions sequestered in the soils. so all of these natural resource opportunities are using natural solutions and need to be a big part of it. when we talk about how to incentivize the agricultural community, incentivizing best practices that lower emissions through different soil management practices, different crop practices, different planting practices, these are all opportunities we have that can be a significant and complementary, meaning in some cases, this helps the yields of our farmers, rather than a detrimental effect on our agricultural community. importantly, u.s. agriculture is the most efficient agriculture in the world, meaning that there is less emissions per unit of crops from farming in the united states than any other country in the world.
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we feed the world, and that is helping to reduce global emissions are just like our economy, the more me -- we manufacture here, because of efficiency in our economy and energy sector, we produce products at lower camilla to emissions than in other countries would so we are leading the world today and some of these practices. we do have big opportunities to expand in the agriculture sector, using natural resource management practices. host: pro-public road a piece about the drought situation in the west, and that 70% of the farmers out there are growing what they called unnecessary crops and that they are growing alfalfa to feed cattle, not just cattle in the united states but it is being shipped to the middle east and other countries to feed cattle over there. your reaction to that? guest: looking at the excess water we have in south louisiana, california and others can have as much as they want of it.
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secondly, in regards about my comments about best management practices, we need to look at all of the types of efforts going on and figure out we can be smarter about using our agricultural land, how we can build upon that success of being the most efficient food producer in the world in terms of emissions per yield of crops. there is no question that we can make additional progress there, and i think it is a huge opportunity for us. host: connie in illinois, republican. welcome to the conversation. caller: good morning, c-span. i have just got to say, everything that is happening today is written in the holy bible by the one who controls the climate, god almighty of the holy bible, and not man. and god give america everything we need to survive in these last days.
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he gave us oil, coal, wind, solar. he gave us gas and oil. everything. and we need to use everything. these countries that went to wind and solar, they are going back to gas and oil now. host: do you agree with her? guest: i do believe there is a god, and i do believe that he blessed us with a lot of resources in the united states. i think it is important for us to remember that there is something much greater than we are. in regard to the resources we have in the u.s., she brought up conventional fuels, things like natural gas, gasoline and oil, it is important to keep in mind that those fuel sources have about 30 times the energy density of the next closest renewable source. so all these people talking about going out and saying that we're going to electrify our car
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fleet or we're going to make all of these ships powered by battery, we have really got to think through that. because in many cases, the technology is not there, the energy density is not there, and there are some amazing innovations happening now in texas and louisiana and other places where they have been able to demonstrate that you can use things like natural gas and can have zero emissions. continuing to use this very energy dense resource that we have abundantly in the united states, but you are meeting some of these clean energy objectives. meanwhile, as was brought up earlier, we have to think through what happens when we become dependent upon mining critical minerals, and what we do with spent batteries that generally have a 10 to 12-year lifespan, all of that e-waste. we have to think about the strategy, and some folks have left the science and it has kind
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of become a religion, very concerning because we have to keep this anchored on science evidence. you can look at what california has done, largely viewed as being one of the most progressive states on the climate. they have the eighth worst emissions growth in america, most dependent state on foreign energy, and they recently shut down a nuclear power plant, emissions free, and then sent a letter asking for an injunction to emit more emissions beyond allowable limits in the state of california. at the least reliable grid, high electricity prices. why in the world would you want to take that? or in europe, they became dependent upon wind, and wind stopped blowing, and they had to bring in dirty and expensive energy sources to solve their problem because they do not have sufficient energy. we have got to learn from the mistakes of some of our friends in europe, from the state of california, and proceed in a way based on science and based on america's resources that are affordable and clean. for us, double and triple down
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on these strategies that have proven to not work is an awful path forward for the united states. host: bob in virginia, independent. caller: good morning, representative graves. guest: good morning. caller: the air quality and the temperature are two completely separate things. there is a thing called the milankitovch cycles. he was a serbian astrophysicist, mathematician just, as drum assists -- as dramatist, and a civil engineer, and he calculated the position of the earth in relation to the sun. everyone needs to look that up. it has to do with the orbit around the sun, the tilt of the
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axis of the earth, and the movement of the earth around the axis. this happens on a 26,000 and a 100,000-year cycle. this was all explained. host: ok, the congressman is shaking his head. guest: bob, thanks. i hope i do not ever have to repeat the spelling of that name. [laughs] you bring up a point that is very important. a lot of people, and i made this point earlier, i think that climate has kind of become a religion to some people, rather than a science. you are exactly right that there are other factors that do influence the weather patterns and climate in the united states , including things like the amount of energy covering --
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coming from the sun, and that is variable. there is a tilt on the earth's axis, so there are other factors that influence weather patterns and climate on earth. we have to take all of those things into consideration, instead of just going in and saying we're going to kneecap the u.s. economy and do all these things and that will save us. because in some cases, there are other external factors not being brought to the table. host: we're going to springfield, illinois, democratic caller. caller: good morning, please allow me a few minutes. you mentioned god quite a few times and religion quite a few times. do you believe in science, as well, and have you taken a covert shot? guest: yeah, thanks. i think i mentioned god once, and i am a believer and a sinne r. two, i do believe in science. three, i lost my father to covid earlier this year. and while it is my private
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health information, i am happy to share with you that, yes, i have been vaccinated. caller: very good. you are a smart gentleman. i have two things to ask about. we have spent $80 billion on disaster relief this year. mentioned $500 million over 10 years. we would actually save $30 billion if we implemented the biden policy on the environment. you mentioned china. does louisiana have climate change, as well? does it affect you? guest: i brought that up earlier. yes. caller: you always mention other countries are doing it are not doing it, don't you have a responsibility to louisiana? guest: i do. let me tell you what the science says. the science is clear that we can
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cut every bit of emissions globally, not just in louisiana or the united states, globally today, and we are still going to see changes in climate. there is already this momentum that shows up. we could cut everything today. depending on the model you look at, 50, 75, 100, or even longer, you will have that momentum built up that we will not be able to stop or change based on current technology, including reducing all emissions globally. so what we're doing in louisiana is we are making no regrets investments, investing in resiliency. that should not be a partisan fight. we are making record investments in louisiana. i have been able to secure about $5.6 billion in addressing many of the resiliency projects and coastal restoration in our home state, because these are critical investments. we currently have to be working on implementing this clean energy future, but it has got to
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be the united states working in lockstep with other countries, not this disparity we are seeing today with the united states is reducing and china is increasing four times more than we are reducing. that is moving net in the wrong direction. a further challenge, our children and grandchildren and our great grandchildren's future. host: 500 billion proposed by the president for climate change proposals over 10 years, $50 billion investment every year, and to try to reduce the natural disaster emergency bills that we see every year to the tune of a b billion dollars this year. --$80 billion this year. guest: based on science, does not make any sense. here is why. if you are going to say that by reducing emissions over the next 10 years we're going to reduce disaster costs by $30 billion, $80 billion, $800 billion, based on the moment of an
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concentration of greenhouse gases in the environment today, there is virtually nothing you can right now to affect what happens over the next 10 years. that momentum is baked in, it is done. the one opportunity is if we can advance technology where we can actually withdraw greenhouse gases from the atmosphere right now and sequester those and actually reduce concentrations, that has some potential. but there is no math that any critical scientist can show you that over the next 10 years we're going to resist disaster costs as a result of efforts solely in the u.s. to reduce emissions. that just does not hold water. host: the ceo's of exxon, bp, shell, and exxon will be on capitol hill tomorrow, and we have coverage on c-span3 at 9:00 a.m. eastern time. i am wondering, if you set on that panel, what would you ask them? guest: i will be on that panel
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tomorrow, and i am excited to have the opportunity to join. i have mentioned this, and i think it is worth mentioning again, i am really concerned at this issue of climate -- look, it is serious, it is something we have to keep on the front burner and address. but this discussion has departed so far from real science. we refer to it in our office as the church of climatology. the solutions, the discussion is no longer anchored to science by many. folks are just talking about this as an emotional issue. that is very dangerous, for us to allow or legislate based on emotion. we have got to move forward on a path based upon science, based upon evidence, based upon


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