WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senators Shelley Moore Capito (R-W.Va.), Ranking Member of the Senate Environment and Public Works (EPW) Committee, Jim Inhofe (R-Okla.), Kevin Cramer (R-N.D.), Cynthia Lummis (R-Wyo.), John Boozman (R-Ark.), Roger Wicker (R-Miss.), John Barrasso (R-Wyo.), John Cornyn (R-Texas), Rick Scott (R-Fla.), John Hoeven (R-N.D.), Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.), and James Lankford (R-Okla.), today introduced legislation, known as the Real Emergencies Act, to clarify the president cannot use climate change as the basis to declare a national emergency.

“Right now, Americans are paying astronomical rates at the pump—with our country having already surpassed the highest recorded average gas price ever. Instead of addressing this problem head on and promoting policies that encourage American energy independence, President Biden and his administration would rather ignore these problems. In the meantime, they are coordinating with extreme environmental groups behind the scenes to lay the groundwork to implement the administration’s zealous climate agenda by declaring a ‘national climate emergency.’ Our legislation would ensure the president cannot use made-up powers to circumvent Congress and govern by executive overreach,” Ranking Member Capito said.

“The president should not be swayed by radical environmentalists to impose their Green New Deal dream, but that is what we are up against,” Senator Inhofe said. “These leftists are calling for President Biden to invoke a national emergency to ‘address climate change.’ In other words, they want the president to have the authority to push through far-fetched green policies that would hamstring our economy, increase energy prices even more for American families and stifle Oklahoma’s energy producers. The Biden administration has proven time and again that they must be held accountable—that’s why I joined Sen. Capito in introducing the Real Emergencies Act. We should be unleashing affordable and reliable American energy, not stifling it.”

“House Progressives’ shortsighted attempt to double down on President Biden’s failed energy policies by encouraging him to declare a national climate emergency and ban fossil fuel development would be an unprecedented abuse of his authority, cripple America’s energy stability, and devastate global energy markets. The Real Emergencies Act applies a much-needed check on the executive branch. We should instead focus on an all-the-above energy solution which is crucial to defeat our adversaries, lower energy prices, and address global greenhouse gas emissions,” Senator Cramer said.

“Democrats have failed to pass their unpopular and destructive Green New Deal through Congress, so they are calling on President Biden to enact it by executive order. This is not only unconstitutional, it would bankrupt American families and Wyoming’s energy economy. I’m proud to support Senator Shelley Moore Capito’s efforts to make sure that the Biden administration knows it is the role of Congress to legislate, not the president,” Senator Lummis said.

“As prices rise at the pump, the answer to containing costs is to unleash the abundance of American energy. I’ve long championed an all-of-the-above energy strategy and it’s time President Biden take action to strengthen our resources and reject enacting extreme environmental policies that will make it more expensive to fill up our vehicles and heat our homes,” Senator Boozman said.

“Energy is critical to our national security. President Biden should be unleashing the untapped potential of America’s natural resources to lower gas prices and make us safer,” Senator Wicker said. “Instead, Democrats are pushing harder on their radical environmental agenda by calling for a totally unwarranted state of emergency. This would put our nation at a further disadvantage at a critical juncture. I am glad to join my friend Senator Capito on legislation to ensure executive authorities are not misused for political purposes.”

“President Biden and Congressional Democrats will stop at nothing to move their radical green agenda forward at any cost,” Senator Barrasso said. “Congress already rejected the Green New Disaster. Now the Biden administration wants to make an end-run around Congress and the American people to pursue their pipe dream of climate extremism. The Real Emergencies Act will stop the Biden administration from enacting new punishing regulations that will increase energy costs at time when Americans can least afford it.”

“Radical Green New Deal policies are a prime example of how out of touch Democrat-controlled Washington is with reality. Climate change is real and requires real solutions, but the Democrats want Biden to use unrelated emergency powers that would be a pure abuse of his authority. It’s time to pass the Real Emergencies Act and put an end to Democrats’ plans to use fake outrage to advance their far left agenda,” Senator Scott said.

“Consumers are paying record energy prices because the Biden administration is taking the wrong approach to energy development for our nation and continues to put up roadblocks for our domestic energy producers,” Senator Hoeven said. “We introduced the Real Emergencies Act to stop the president from continuing to target our energy industry, and prevent him from weaponizing national emergency powers to block oil and gas development. This is part of our efforts to push back on the Biden administration and instead empower domestic energy production so that we can utilize America’s abundant oil and natural gas reserves.”

“Joe Biden has a proven track record of putting progressive agenda items above American interests,” Senator Blackburn said. “There’s no better example of Biden’s failed leadership than his willingness to destroy domestic energy independence. The Real Emergencies Act will stop the White House from undermining America’s competitive advantage and international strength.”

“The term ‘national emergency’ has no meaning under the Biden Administration,” Senator Lankford said. “Oklahomans know that millions of migrants trying to illegally cross our southern border from every country is a national security issue and should be considered a national emergency. But under Biden, COVID is only a national emergency if you’re in the military and haven’t had a COVID shot or if you’re taking public transportation, including planes, rideshares, buses, and trains and are not wearing a mask. But if you’re an illegal border crosser with COVID, he’s telling you to come on in. Now he and his progressive colleagues are trying to call climate change a national emergency. Let’s keep the word emergency for real emergencies.”

U.S. Representatives David B. McKinley (R-W.Va.-01), along with ten co-sponsors, introduced the companion bill in the House of Representatives.

“Under President Biden, American families are paying record high prices for gas, on top of a new 40-year high inflation rate and rising energy costs,” Representative McKinley said. “Instead of practical solutions and expanding energy production in the U.S., extreme far-left environmental advocacy groups continue their crusade against American fossil fuel production. Now, the Squad and their extreme left allies have called for President Biden to declare climate change a national emergency. The energy crisis facing America is the direct result of President Biden’s commitment to his environmental activists and their anti-American energy policy. The real emergency is the pain at the pump Americans are feeling.”


Continuing in the spirit of the “Green New Deal,” radical environmental groups continue to call for President Biden to invoke the President’s National Emergency authorities to address climate change. Liberal Congressional Democrats are following suit.

The Real Emergencies Act clarifies that the president does not have the authority to declare a national emergency on the premise of climate change. Specifically, the legislation would prohibit the president from using the three primary statutory authorities available to him (the National Emergencies Act, the Stafford Act, and section 319 of the Public Health Service Act) to declare a national emergency solely on the basis of climate change. Actual national emergencies or major disasters (hurricanes, flooding, etc.) may still be declared.  

Click here to read the full bill text.

Click here to read a one-pager on the legislation.

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