Iowa’s Miller-Meeks Tapped to Lead Conservative Climate Caucus 

April 1, 2024 by Dan McCue
Iowa’s Miller-Meeks Tapped to Lead Conservative Climate Caucus 
Rep. Mariannette Miller-Meeks, R-Iowa, the new chair of the House Conservative Climate Caucus.

WASHINGTON — Rep. Mariannette Miller-Meeks, R-Iowa, on Monday was named the new chair of the nearly three-year-old Conservative Climate Caucus.

Miller-Meeks is taking over leadership of the group from Rep. John Curtis, R-Utah, who helped found the caucus in June 2021 and has been its chair ever since.

Curtis is now transitioning to the advisory role of chair emeritus.

“I am grateful for Rep. Curtis’ leadership founding and growing the Conservative Climate Caucus,” Miller-Meeks said in a written statement.

“The U.S. is a leader in reducing greenhouse gas emissions, all while increasing energy production,” she said. “As I assume leadership of the caucus, I look forward to continuing to promote an any-of-the-above strategy for ensuring U.S. energy dominance with a globally competitive economy, while simultaneously reducing emissions for a cleaner, healthier planet.”

For those who may be unfamiliar with the Conservative Climate Caucus, it’s probably best described as a group of conservative Republicans who believe the climate is indeed changing, and who acknowledge that the global industrial era has contributed to that change.

But where progressives and others say the answer is a full tilt move to renewable energy and curbing greenhouse gas emissions, the Conservative Climate Caucus maintains that fossil fuels are not boogiemen.

While they agree that greenhouse gas emissions should be reduced, they believe the free market can develop innovative technologies that will allow fossil fuels to remain part of the global energy mix for decades to come.

“Reducing emissions is the goal, not reducing energy choices,” the caucus says on its website.

To spread its message, the caucus strives to educate House Republicans on climate policies and legislation consistent with its conservative values. It organizes co-dels and staff-dels to better understand technologies and issues related to climate, and arranges for staff and member briefings on climate proposals it feels merit its backing.

In addition to Miller-Meeks and Curtis, its leadership team includes Reps. Buddy Carter, R-Ga., Jen Kiggans, R-Va., Greg Murphy, R-N.C., Tim Walberg, R-Mich., and Lori Chavez-DeRemer, R-Ore.

Curtis on Monday said he “could not be more excited handing the keys to one of the most effective and ambitious members of the Republican Conference.”

“Rep. Miller-Meeks has been a constant advocate for energy and climate issues, representing her rural and energy rich district incredibly well,” he said.

Heather Reams, executive director of Citizens for Responsible Energy Solutions, a right-of-center nonprofit organization based in Washington, D.C., is also chair of the Conservative Climate Foundation.

She described Miller-Meeks as “a true champion of clean energy and conservative climate solutions whether she is in Iowa, abroad or in the U.S. House of Representatives.” 

“The majority of energy in her home state of Iowa is generated by wind power, and Rep. Miller-Meeks knows well the wide-reaching benefits that clean energy offers to local communities. I look forward to working with Chair Miller-Meeks as she guides the caucus and continues the advocacy and education Rep. John Curtis started three years ago,” Reams said.

Dan can be reached at [email protected] and @DanMcCue

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