Rep. Cori Bush, D-Mo., on Thursday claimed that fossil fuels kill “millions of people” and alleged that oil company executives who promote them are “a striking example of white supremacy.”

Bush, who is a member of the House Oversight Committee’s Subcommittee on the Environment, made the comments during a congressional hearing about climate change with the CEOs of Exxon, BP, Shell and Chevron.

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After asking BP America CEO David Lawler if the majority of fossil fuel CEOs are Black or white, Bush went on to ask Shell Oil CEO Gretchen Watkins if an oil refinery is more likely to be in a Black or White community. She then asked Chevron CEO Michael Worth if the impacts of climate change were more likely to hit a Black neighborhood or a white neighborhood first.

FILE - In this Aug. 5, 2020, file photo, Activist Cori Bush speaks during a news conference Wednesday, Aug. 5, 2020, in St. Louis. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson, File)

FILE – In this Aug. 5, 2020, file photo, Activist Cori Bush speaks during a news conference Wednesday, Aug. 5, 2020, in St. Louis. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson, File)

Each executive maintained they lacked the requisite information, after which Bush answered her own questions.

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“The facts are clear,” Bush said, citing a 2017 NAACP Clean Air Task Force report that claimed African Americans are 75% more likely than the average American to be directly affected in some way by the operation of a company, industrial or service facility.

“For years you all have continued to promote fossil fuels despite knowing that promoting them means promoting environmental racism and violence in Black and brown communities,” Bush said. “You all are still promoting and selling fossil fuels that are killing millions of people.”

“This is a striking example of white supremacy,” she added. “Your profit-driven choices threaten my life, the lives of my family, my neighbors and our communities every single day,” 

Bush continued by describing herself as “a Black congresswoman with asthma.” She later called on all the executives to resign.

Storm clouds from Tropical Storm Nicholas are seen behind homes of the vanishing Native American community of Isle de Jean Charles, La., which were destroyed by Hurricane Ida, Tuesday, Sept. 14, 2021. 

Storm clouds from Tropical Storm Nicholas are seen behind homes of the vanishing Native American community of Isle de Jean Charles, La., which were destroyed by Hurricane Ida, Tuesday, Sept. 14, 2021. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert)

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On Oct. 22, Bush sent a letter to President Biden urging him to end fossil fuel expansion.

“As we continue our work to advance the Build Back Better agenda and create millions of good climate jobs, we write to you to express our grave concern that ongoing actions by your administration threaten to undermine our shared goal to further climate, racial, and economic justice,” began the letter, which was signed by 12 of Bush’s Democratic colleagues.

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Commending the president for his commitment to “whole-of-government climate mobilization, federal relief for toxic pollution in Black, Brown, and Indigenous communities, and respect for Tribal sovereignty, self-governance, and vigorous consultation,” the letter went to express concern for the administration’s “ongoing support for fossil fuel infrastructure, pipelines, and leases, including through government subsidies.”

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