ICYMI: Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, A Vehement Climate Denier, Supports IRA Funded Clean Energy Expansion in her District
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WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, POLITICO reported that Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, a climate change skeptic who has spread toxic climate disinformation, including claiming that global warming is “healthy” for people, is now celebrating the recently announced Qcells expansion in her district. Rep. Greene’s change in tune on clean energy represents a shift in the politics of climate, where even the most climate-skeptic officials have to support clean energy expansion. Additionally, Republicans like Rep. Greene are stuck between their own unpopular votes against the Inflation Reduction Act and the overwhelmingly popular projects that will be announced across the country as the law is fully implemented. This hypocritical trend is sure to continue.
By: Josh Siegel and Kelsey Tamborrino, 1/11/22
Key excerpts below:
What’s happening: Conservative firebrand Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Ga.), who once described global warming as “healthy” for the planet, is coming out in support of a significant solar manufacturing expansion occurring partially in her district – spending made possible by Democrats’ climate, tax and health care bill.
Solar company Q Cells said Wednesday that it would invest $2.5 billion in Georgia to expand its solar panel manufacturing plant in Dalton and build a new facility in Bartow County.
“We’re excited to have jobs,” Greene told POLITICO in a brief interview Wednesday reacting to the news. “I’m not against renewable energy. I just don’t think it should be forced on our country and federally subsidized like in the manner that it has been. The market should choose.”
Why it matters: Greene’s support for the project illustrates the tricky balancing act that now faces Republicans who are skeptical of taking action to address climate change, as government funding increasingly supports new green energy projects in their own home states and districts.
Republican states and districts are likely to disproportionately benefit from the investment, construction and job creation that flows from Democrats’ party-line Inflation Reduction Act, since many clean energy projects are built in rural regions of the country.
Q Cells’ existing factory in particular had been hailed for its potential to renew domestic solar manufacturing, as the U.S. has largely relied on China for the solar supply chain. Republicans, like Democrats, are concerned about China’s dominance in clean energy manufacturing. But they universally opposed Democrats’ party-line bill that provided massive tax incentives to onshore the clean energy supply chain.