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New caucus aims to shatter bipartisan gridlock on climate change

By
Nicholas Sakelaris
A new bipartisan caucus aims to break up the gridlock on climate change by having discussions that consider all viewpoints. Photo by Stephen Shaver/UPI 
A new bipartisan caucus aims to break up the gridlock on climate change by having discussions that consider all viewpoints. Photo by Stephen Shaver/UPI  | License Photo

Oct. 23 (UPI) -- A new bipartisan climate change caucus aims to bring carbon-reducing legislation that will break through the gridlock and pass the Senate and the House.

The goal is to remove the politics from the climate change debate.

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The Senate Climate Solutions Caucus was started by Sens. Chris Coons, D-Del., and Mike Braun, R-Ind. They announced the caucus in an op-ed for The Hill Wednesday.

"Our caucus seeks to take the politics out of this important issue," the senators said in the op-ed. "Instead, members will commit to an honest dialogue, through which we can develop solutions that solidify American environmental leadership, promote American workers and make meaningful progress on protecting our environment."

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The caucus will emphasize the importance of Republicans and Democrats working together to bring about change. Coons and Braun acknowledge that they come from different backgrounds, different states and political parties.

"But we both recognize the importance of American leadership in addressing our changing climate," the senators said.

They highlighted the potential dangers their states face if climate change progresses unchecked. Delaware is threatened by rising sea levels as arctic glaciers melt. Over the next 50 years, nearly 7,000 homes could be destroyed. Indiana relies heavily on coal, which could be a target for environmental regulations.

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"This is why it is crucial that Indiana be represented at the table to make sure that progress on environmental policy is balanced by the need to continue building good paying Hoosier jobs," the senators said.

The caucus will bring in a wide range of viewpoints and stakeholders for "real conversations about protecting our environment, securing America's energy future and protecting American manufacturing jobs," Braun told NBC News.

"Our caucus will help facilitate these discussions by bringing an equal number of members from each party to the table, and it will only act when each member agrees," the senators said.

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