Grijalva: Republican Demands to Waive Environmental Standards in Puerto Rico as Response to Hurricane Lack Any Credibility

Washington, D.C. – Ranking Member Raúl M. Grijalva (D-Ariz.) released the following statement on today’s news that Chairman Rob Bishop (R-Utah) quickly urged waiving the National Environmental Policy Act as a response to the hurricane damage and humanitarian needs in Puerto Rico. As E&E News reported this morning, Bishop is pushing to waive the law to “speed up the recovery” on the island.

“Our response to human suffering has to be about food, shelter and water first, not deregulation or politics. We can’t make Puerto Rico a petri dish for extreme policy ideas or use this disaster to push ideology. My Republican colleagues have been finding excuses to waive NEPA for as long as I’ve been here. The other reason they have no credibility on these issues is that once you say you don’t believe in climate change, everything you say after that is meaningless. It’s time to assess the damage, get a relief package together as fast as possible and start rebuilding in a sustainable way. Dropping environmental laws doesn’t accomplish that. We need to get resources to the people who need them most and stop talking about weakening our standards.”

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