House Speaker Nancy Pelosi warned that women around the world face special dangers due to the negative global impact of climate change, according to a Wednesday report.
“It’s a threat multiplier that amplifies and accelerates existing inequities,” said the California Democrat during “gender day” at the United Nations-organized COP26 summit in Glasgow, Scotland, on Tuesday, according to The New York Times. “Eighty percent of people displaced by climate change globally are women.”
The UN has also claimed that women are more endangered by climate change because of economic, social, and cultural inequities and factors.
“Seventy percent of the 1.3 billion people living in conditions of poverty are women,” said the UN in a report.
“Women represent a high percentage of poor communities that are highly dependent on local natural resources for their livelihood, particularly in rural areas where they shoulder the major responsibility for household water supply and energy for cooking and heating, as well as for food security,” the report continued.
One of the Democrats who accompanied Pelosi is Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York, whose “Green New Deal” proposals are at the center of a number of provisions contained in President Joe Biden’s $1.85 trillion social and climate spending plan currently stalled in Congress.
The plan includes $555 billion “in tax credits and incentives to promote wind and solar power, electric vehicles, climate-friendly agriculture and forestry programs, and a host of other clean-energy programs,” the Times reported. Should it pass eventually, Pelosi said it will amount to “the most ambitious and consequential climate and clean energy investment of all time.”
But while a number of moderate House Democrats are squeamish about the massive spending bill, it faces its biggest hurdle in the Senate. There, Sen. Joe Manchin from the natural gas-and-coal-producing state of West Virginia has voiced repeated opposition to portions of the measure that cut out fossil fuels, which are much more plentiful and a lot cheaper for American consumers.
At the same time, the Biden administration is poised to move ahead with a regulatory regime aimed at emissions reduction. For instance, Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Michael Regan noted Tuesday that before year’s end he will announce a “suite” of new regulations aimed at electricity producers, moves which Republicans say will only further increase the price of energy for consumers who are already paying more due to supply chain shortages and other issues.
But while the EPA chief moves forward, the U.S. Supreme Court is set to decide whether his agency has the constitutional authority to regulate so-called “greenhouse gases.”
Regan told the Times he isn’t waiting for the high court’s ruling, noting: “We have pens to paper right now.”
For her part, Ocasio-Cortez sought to press attendees at the COP26 summit to hold the United States responsible for climate change, though China has become the world’s No. 1 polluter, followed closely behind by India, which is also developing its economy. China, along with Russia, avoided the conference.
“We’re here to push,” she told the Times. “It’s time for us to re-examine our first-world and global governments, to re-examine their priorities about what is possible, and really try to push them on the boundaries of that.”
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