Republican Rep. Bob Good of Virginia introduced a bill on Friday that would prevent the use of federal funds on two of President Joe Biden’s top climate programs, according to a copy of the bill obtained by the Daily Caller News Foundation.
The No American Climate Corps Act would prohibit the Biden administration from deploying federal funds to bankroll the American Climate Corps program and the Justice40 Initiative; both programs are signature elements of Biden’s sweeping climate agenda. The American Climate Corps is a green jobs training program, while the Justice40 Initiative fuses principles of social justice into the administration’s massive green spending, establishing an administration-wide goal to have 40% of the overall benefits of climate spending flow to “disadvantaged communities.”
“The Biden administration is running full steam ahead with its economy crippling climate agenda while families are struggling to make ends meet,” Good told the DCNF. “My bill would prevent President Biden from unleashing a 20,000 strong climate army on the American people.”
The categories of spending covered by the Justice40 Initiative include “climate change, clean energy and energy efficiency, clean transit, affordable and sustainable housing, training and workforce development, remediation and reduction of legacy pollution and the development of critical clean water and wastewater infrastructure,” according to the White House.
The American Climate Corps, a program which Biden rolled out using executive powers in September, is designed to train about 20,000 people to find work in climate-related fields, including facilitating pathways to working in the federal civil service, according to the White House. An earlier iteration of the green jobs training program did not make it into what became the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA), as congressional Republicans opposed the program largely because of its potential costs, according to The Associated Press.
Despite the initial setback, many Democrats, including New York Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Massachusetts Sen. Ed Markey, pressed the White House to implement the American Climate Corps via executive action to demonstrate its commitment to treating climate change as an emergency, according to the AP. Environmentalist groups also urged Biden to follow through with the American Climate Corps, despite its exclusion from the IRA.
The White House has not yet unveiled a price tag for the program, but Biden’s initial plan allocated $10 billion for the program before it was removed from the bill.
The administration is seeking to transform the fossil fuel-dependent energy system to net-zero carbon dioxide emissions by 2035, and is aiming to achieve the same goal for the overall American economy by 2050. The White House has characterized Biden’s agenda as including “the most ambitious climate actions in U.S. history.”
The White House did not respond immediately to a request for comment.
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