The Biden administration violated its own emissions rules recently when they didn’t track the greenhouse gas emissions that were created when some senior officials traveled to a United Nations climate conference.
The Government Accountability Office released a new report that revealed that the State Department didn’t follow one of President Joe Biden’s executive orders by sending a total of 259 people to the November 2022 UN Climate Change Conference of the Parties that was held in Egypt.
According to the GAO report, the State Department also didn’t track the emissions created by the contingency that went to that same conference the year before.
As the GAO announced in a recent news release:
“An executive order requires federal agencies to track and reduce emissions from air travel and other sources with the goal of achieving net-zero government emissions by 2050. However, the State Department did not calculate emissions from travel to these conferences.”
Biden signed the executive order that deals with emissions tracking back in December of 2021. Ironically, he signed the order after he attended the 26th iteration of that UN climate conference.
The GAO explained what the State Department told them when they were questioned about the tracking, in what can only be described as a hit-your-head-against-the-wall excuse. The GAO said:
“State officials told GAO that they did not have a systematic way to calculate greenhouse gas emissions from U.S. delegation travel to the United Nation’s Conference of the Parties 26 or 27 or any past meetings of the Conference of the Parties. State is developing methods to estimate future travel emissions, according to State officials.”
The State Department issued its own official response to the situation, saying it agreed with the “thrust of the recommendation,” while also proposing that it would track emissions for all official travel to every meeting.
Again, another hit-your-head-against-the-wall statement. The State Department – which obviously falls under the auspices of the Biden administration – has no choice but to follow the recommendations, because they were handed down as official rules by their boss’ executive order.
Yet, somehow, they only agree with the “thrust” of what the GAO told them.
The GAO investigated whether the State Department was complying with Biden’s executive order after a request was made by Republican Senators Joni Ernst from Iowa, Tom Cotton from Arkansas and Shelley Moore Capito from West Virginia.
Obviously, they were right in making that request.
After the report came out, Capito hit the nail on the head with a comment she gave to Politico. She said:
“Americans are tired of bureaucrats in Washington, D.C., who don’t practice what they preach when it comes to protecting the environment. In the Biden administration, the same people who are closing down power plants across the country and forcing Americans to buy electric vehicles are also the ones flying to climate conferences and using fossil fuels without apology.”
Many of the top officials in the Biden administration have tried to dismiss concerns about the climate impact their own personal travel has caused. This includes climate czar John Kerry, whose family’s private jet has emitted 300 metric tons of carbon just during Biden’s time in the White House.