Massachusetts Senator Edward Markey (D) and New York Congressman Mondaire Jones (D) recently sent a letter calling on the president to uphold his radical federal climate goals by requiring the Department of Defense (DOD) to commit to reducing its energy consumption in compliance with the same restrictive so-called man-made climate change mandates as everyone else.
"The DOD is the single-largest consumer of energy in the United States and the world's single-largest institutional consumer of petroleum," the lawmakers write. "Since 2001, the military has accounted for 77 to 80% of federal energy use. According to the White House's December 2021 Federal Sustainability Plan, 56% of federal government emissions come from the DOD. Put simply, we will neither achieve the reductions necessary to avoid the most catastrophic effects of climate change nor meet our economy-wide obligations under the Paris Climate Agreement while ignoring the climate impact of the U.S. military."
Currently, military- and defense-related activities are exempt from President Biden's executive order on Catalyzing Clean Energy Industries and Jobs Through Federal Sustainability, whose ultimate goal is to completely eliminate the use of fossil fuels.
"The signers of this letter are among the most far-left examples of people who are not thinking clearly that you can find," responds Elaine Donnelly, president of the Center for Military Readiness (CMR). "They're talking about Department of Defense military vehicles, aircraft, [and] combat support equipment should be subject to climate control? They should be electrified somehow? What they are advocating here are vehicles that are not efficient, that have to be tethered to cords or batteries."
Donnelly says the whole proposal is "ludicrous."
"The problem with this executive order is not that it doesn't cover the Department of Defense; the problem is that it exists at all," she submits. "It shouldn't be imposed on the civilian world, either."
In addition to leading this letter, Markey and Jones authored an amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act of 2022 (NDAA), which President Biden signed into law in December 2021, requiring the Department of Defense to commit to reducing greenhouse gas emissions in line with science-based targets.
So considering the things Biden's administration has been doing with the military, Donnelly would not be surprised if the president does not go along with the request.