Powell: ‘Inappropriate’ for Federal Reserve Bank to Make Climate Policy

Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell said Tuesday it would be “inappropriate” for the central bank to plunge itself into the fight against climate change.

“Without explicit congressional legislation, it would be inappropriate for us to use our monetary policy or supervisory tools to promote a greener economy or to achieve other climate-based goals. We are not, and will not be, a ‘climate policymaker,’” Powell said Tuesday.

Powell argued that going beyond the Fed’s basic mandate of stable prices and maximum employment would “undermine the case” for the bank’s independence from Congress and the White House, which allows it to raise and cut interest rates without approval from elected officials.

“It is essential that we stick to our statutory goals and authorities, and that we resist the temptation to broaden our scope to address other important social issues of the day,” Powell said.