Today, the Republican lead House Natural Resources Subcommittee on Oversight hosts its inaugural hearing and invited industry cronies to serve as witnesses, some of whom have ties to Russian oligarchs and embrace climate denial. In response, Acccountable.US released the following statement and analysis exposing the professional ties and extremism of the GOP’s witnesses. 

Under GOP control, the House Natural Resource committee has reached new lows. As Big Oil companies post historic profits off the backs of American consumers, GOP Members invite literal Industry spokespeople and executives to serve as witnesses. The new majority is intent on using its power to launch partisan attacks and advance the agenda of their wealthy industry allies instead of holding them accountable. Just a day after propping up a witness with ties to oligarchs under current U.S. sanctions, they plan to hold a hearing on energy dependence with foreign adversaries. Their hypocrisy knows no bounds."

Jordan Schreiber, Director of Energy and Environment at Accountable.US

Analysis Highlights: 

Kathleen Sgamma, President, Western Energy Alliance:  

  • Sgamma is a long-time spokesperson for the oil industry. 
  • Sgamma has said that the oil industry’s effect on climate change is “infinitesimal.”   
  • Sgamma says the cause of the Bundy family’s armed takeover of the Malheur Wildlife Refuge is “too much federal ownership of land.” Kathleen Sgamma supports drilling near sites sacred to tribes.

Erik Milito, President, National Ocean Industries Association

  • Milito worked for the American Petroleum Institute for 17 years.
  • Milito once spoke on a podcast sponsored by climate-denying extremists who have compared public lands ownership to “bondage.”   

Brian Somers, President, Utah Mining Association 

  • Somers supports efforts to expand uranium mining in Utah. 
  • Somers’s group represents Energy Fuels, the Canadian uranium company that lobbied to reduce Bears Ears National Monument. 

Michael Hollomon II, Commercial Director and Member of the Board, U.S. Strategic Metals: 

  • Hollomon is a longtime commodities trader who spent a decade working in Moscow, Russia. 
  • Hollomon is friends with a Hollywood “fixer”, who coordinates parties for Russian oligarchs.
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