Katko says his position on climate change evolving, recognizes human role

Jul 22, 2016

New York Rep. John Katko (R-Camillus) said his position on climate change is "evolving." The Republican representative recently signed onto a resolution that acknowledges a human role in causing climate change related to erratic and damaging weather patterns. That's a reversal from his 2014 campaign when he said it was unclear if human activities had any influence.

Katko said he now understands more about the issue.

"The more I've studied the issue, the more I've seen the research, more I've seen bipartisan conclusions, I realize that at least some component of what we're doing on Earth is contributing to it," Katko said in an interview with WRVO News.

Katko said he has not come around on the issue for political reasons, but his opponent, Democratic candidate Colleen Deacon, has made it a major policy issue. On her campaign website, Deacon said scientists have reached a consensus on climate change so she wants to transition away from fossil fuel energy sources, invest in clean energy technology and support federal acts to protect natural resources.

The resolution Katko signed said the House of Representatives should address human activities impacting climate change, but not at the expense of the economy. It was authored by another member of the New York Congressional delegation, Rep. Chris Gibson (R-Kinderhook), and has cosponsors that include Reps. Elise Stefanik (R-Willsboro) and Richard Hanna (R-Barneveld).