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House Committee Passes Defense Policy Bill With Climate Change Amendment

The House Armed Services Committee passed a $696.5 billion defense policy bill one minute to midnight on Wednesday by a vote of 60 to one.

Tucked into the bill, known as the National Defense Authorization Act, is an amendment introduced by Representative Jim Langevin (D-Rhode Island) requiring the Pentagon to assess the effects of climate change on military installations over the next 20 years. The amendment had bipartisan support within the committee, with just one Republican member speaking out against it.

"There is no evidence that climate change causes war," Representative Liz Cheney (R-Wyoming) said. "North Korea is not developing nuclear tipped ICBMs because the climate's changing. ISIS and al-Qaeda are not attacking the West because of the weather."

Meanwhile, her Republican colleagues embraced a "better to be safe than sorry" approach.

"There's nothing dangerous about talking about it. It's a report," Representative Rob Bishop (R-Utah) said on Wednesday. "It's just a report and there are strategic implications that we need to be aware of," added Representative Jim Bridenstine (R-Oklahoma).

The NDAA moves now to a full House of Representatives vote, which will take place after the July 4th recess.