Washington, D.C.— Congressman Mark Meadows’ (R-NC) proposed amendment to H.R. 4660 passed the House Thursday evening by a vote of 226-179.
The amendment would prohibit funds from being used to negotiate, or enter into, a trade deal that includes provisions to limit greenhouse gas emissions.
“Taxpayers’ dollars should not be utilized to broker trade deals that will include job-killing restrictions on carbon and greenhouse gas emissions,” Congressman Meadows said. “Our trade representatives should be singularly focused on creating jobs and growing the economy—they can’t be negotiating with two agendas,” he added.
The amendment comes in response to efforts by the Obama Administration to attempt to implement environmental policies through trade agreements.
According to the Office of the United States Trade Representative’s website, “The Obama Administration has continued and enhanced U.S. efforts to address environmental objectives through multilateral, regional, and bilateral trade initiatives.”
“Including caps on carbon and greenhouse gas emissions in trade agreements will give countries who choose not to abide by such regulations, like China, an automatic upper hand,” Meadows explained. “Why would we engage in trade agreements with one hand tied behind our back?” he added.
The amendment to the Commerce, Justice, Science, and Related Agencies Appropriations Act, would restrict funds—including, but not limited to, staff salaries, trips, events, that would be used to negotiate trade deals that would include caps on carbon or greenhouse gas emissions.