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Rep. Miller-Meeks Outlines Her Priorities for the Conservative Climate Caucus

The Conservative Climate Caucus is under new leadership, after its founder and chairman, Rep. John Curtis (R-UT), stepped down to focus on his campaign for Utah’s open Senate seat. The caucus, which includes over 80 members (more than one-third of the Republican conference in the House) is now being led by Rep. Mariannette Miller-Meeks (R-IA). Rep. Miller-Meeks recently sat down with C3 on Right Voices to discuss her leadership priorities and what role the caucus can play in policymaking. 

With the 2024 election season in full swing, Rep. Miller-Meeks said that her caucus will be working to advance three major legislative priorities.

Pointing toward projected energy demand, Miller-Meeks singled out permitting reform as her number one priority, “A more resilient grid is necessary. [W]hether it’s gas pipelines [or] it’s electric transmission lines, both of those things require changes in permitting.” 

>>>READ: A Welcome Step to Ease Geothermal Permitting on Federal Land

The second priority she identified is unleashing nuclear power. “One of the primary reasons why nuclear is not affordable and it takes so long to build is one, permitting, and two, the regulatory framework we have placed around nuclear. Nuclear would certainly be cost-effective if we were to reduce some of that regulatory burden.”

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Lastly, she pointed to, “Emphas[izing] that we have an entire cadre of renewables other than wind and solar.” While both are important, policymakers can often forget about other sources of renewable energy like hydropower and geothermal. Fortunately, the latter is beginning to be prioritized. Recently the Bureau of Land Management introduced reforms to the permitting process for geothermal and the House Natural Resources Committee passed several bills to unleash the energy source. 

>>>READ: Why Conservatives Should Own the Climate Issue

Rep. Miller-Meeks also discussed the support that the Conservative Climate Caucus is receiving from everyday Americans. Rep. Miller-Meeks specifically mentioned that farmers in her district are supportive of efforts to improve the economy and improve the environment. 

“[O]ur farmers are trying to improve water quality. They’re using less fertilizer and less pesticide. They’re very concerned about being able to productively farm in a manner that brings their crops to market, but also conserves the soil and conserves the water. So whether they do just commodities, row crops like corn and soybeans or niche crops or livestock as well, they’re very concerned. So when you talk to everyday people and you put it in the context of what you’re doing, there’s a lot of buy-in.”

While following Rep. John Curtis is no easy feat, Congresswoman Miller-Meeks is outlining a strong path to bring the Conservative Climate Caucus and pragmatic, pro-growth climate solutions forward.

Watch the discussion here.

The views and opinions expressed are those of the author’s and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of C3.

Copyright © 2020 Conservative Coalition for Climate Solutions

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