Senator Kennedy Grills Department of Energy Deputy Secretary

Senator Kennedy Grills Department of Energy Deputy Secretary

( – During a Senate Committee on Appropriations hearing on May 3rd, 2023, Senator John Kennedy, R-La., questioned Deputy Secretary David Turk from the Department of Energy regarding budget requests from the department for 2024. Senator Kennedy pointed out that the department is requesting an increase of 38 percent for green energy, while only slightly increasing fossil fuel energy budget requests. The department also decreased requests for funding for nuclear energy, making it clear that they are in line with the climate agenda of the Biden administration.

Senator Kennedy pressed Turk about the $50 trillion that his colleagues have spoken about to reach their net zero goals, asking for the deputy secretary to tell him “how much that is going to reduce world temperature.” After attempting to provide an explanation without directly answering the question, Senator Kennedy asked, “You don’t know, do you?” Turk responded by naming the percentage of emissions that the United States is responsible for, which he claimed to be 13 percent, followed by further pushing from Senator Kennedy for him to answer the question he was asking.

Senator Kennedy expressed his frustration with the response from Turk, making sure he was aware that this is something that American citizens will have to pay for, to which they expect solid evidence to be provided before their tax dollars are spent. The Department of Energy is requesting over $51 billion for 2024, with much of the funding going toward President Biden’s climate agenda goals. President Biden signed an executive order in December 2021, with a goal of reaching net zero by the year 2050, with many all-electric requirements implemented within the federal government first, a move that has received praise from Democrats and fury from Republicans.

A key focus in the Biden administration’s agenda is environmental justice, which is at the center of another executive order signed by President Biden on April 21st, 2023. The administration argues that people in low-income communities have been disproportionately affected by carbon emissions over the last several decades in the United States.

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