Biden Administration, President Biden, Biden discussed on Can He Do That?

Can He Do That?


This news. I think the biden administration president biden. John kerry have all said this is just more evidence that the kinds of things we proposed and and the fact that we've made climate change of priorities is the right way to be going that this is just really the latest signal in the latest evidence that we really truly need to be moving as quickly as possible away from a world that relies on fossil fuels and to find different ways to power our homes and the electrify our cars and all sorts of things that will that will really slow through the rate of emissions around the world. That does leave. Open the question of how much they are getting done on that front and able to get done on that front when you step back the. Us is very important and it's the world's second largest omitting country but it's still only about fourteen or so percent of global emissions so what the us does really matters and it sets a tone for a lot of the world but it does really have to be a global effort to sort of turn the tide on the trajectory that we're heading well on the point of what we're doing here the senate this week. Pass the bipartisan infrastructure. Investment and jobs act what sorts of climate investments are in that bill. Yeah there are tens of billions of dollars for things like incentivizing clean energy and building electric charging stations and prioritizing public transit. These kinds of things. It is certainly by any measure A large amount of money but also by any measure not nearly what president biden and and other democrats had hoped to include in this bill. And they're obviously hoping for much broader and bigger funding to come out from this budget reconciliation. Bill that's working. Its way through the congress right now so a lot of that remains to be seen but i mean i think between the two the by the administration and democrats are hoping to to make a really big push on a lot of these efforts that they argue will create a lot of jobs but also are aimed at combating climate change and as we continue working on a bipartisan infrastructure. Bill and a budget resolution. I have committed. We will make historic investments in reversing climate change. I'm proud to say i would clean. Cars for america is going to be a very big part of that. Democrats promised action on climate. And we're gonna make it a vital part of the legislation. We work on in the weeks to come. Joe biden has prioritized climate. Change like no president ever has before yet. That's still not enough. That's small rod. He's the co founder and executive director of evergreen action which is a climate change policy and advocacy organization. Jamaa has been fighting for progressive change on climate policy. And i was curious for climate activists. Take on biden's performance so i asked him how he thinks. Biden is doing on climate. His legacy will be tested by numerous issues but none more so than climate change. They're going to judge him on whether he took bold enough action to defeat the climate crisis and create a new economy. Run on one hundred percent clean energy years from now. It'll be a question of whether we did enough or let the last best opportunity to reckon with this slip. By frankly at this point if i had to give him a great it would be incomplete because it's not the first six months of matter. It's the next six months you know. They started off boldly with the pause on fossil fuel. Leasing ending the keystone excel pipeline. Appointing folks like secretary deb holland who cares about climate deeply at the department interior gene mccarthy to run the new white house climate office these are all positive elements. I think it's just hard to say that anyone is doing enough right now. I think that they've done a lot of good. There's a lot to look back on this positive as far as climate. But it's not enough. There's more that needs to be done. Can we pass a reconciliation bill in the next few months here. That actually has bold standards in our most polluting sectors economy that makes major investments to create the clean energy jobs that we need that centers justice while doing it focuses on creating jobs and on the communities that have borne the brunt of the pollution. The communities hit i in worse by the climate crisis. And if they don't get this reconciliation bill done. They're going to be coming with empty hands to glasgow at the un conference where we really need to show that america's back on the international stage as far as climate leadership. And why is it so important for the us to have a prominent role in fighting climate change. We are the historical biggest emitter of carbon emissions and we have to show leadership and if we are asking the world to decarbonised by mid century than. We need to do that before them. And what's really important here is that we look at the reconciliation bill as a vehicle to tackling that goal and there's a lot of provisions in the draft reconciliation bill in the budget top lines. That could get us there and one of the most important pieces of it is the clean electricity payment program that would act like a clean electricity standard. If we can clean up our electricity grid and then run. Everything on the grid are vs our cars. Our buildings and then make the grid clean. That would take us a lot of the way there and so i. I really want us to see bold investments in clean electricity grid. I really wanna see us. Invest environmental justice to meet the initiative to make forty percent of our investments in black and brown in indigenous communities have been hit i in worst by this crisis. We need invest in clean buildings so that our buildings are run on that clean electricity sector and we need a green bank to help propel jobs in clean energy job creations so those are the things that i'm looking for as kind of key pieces. We need the reconciliation bill. We need to fight for them to be invested at at a at a higher level into keep those provisions in as we go through this process but as a good positive first step. Those are in the bill as currently written now. Now all of these conversations in congress are happening on the backdrop of the release of the new u. n. Report this week. Experts are saying that this is yet another wakeup call to really act on climate change. So what do you think. Do you have hope that this moment will bring significant change you know the takeaway from this report is that we don't need any more reports. Scientists have been telling us for years we need to act boldly now to prevent the worst impacts of climate change. I think of this summer the summer. Twenty twenty one as a point when americans realized that climate change is no longer a chart or graph or happening in some far off future. It's happening in their communities right now. In communities across america. I'm from seattle which was experiencing record breaking heat. Waves had the driest spring since nineteen twenty four california's a tinderbox waiting to explode with droughts wildfires. We've seen extreme weather all across this nation. We've seen smoke from western. Wildfires hit new york city in dc a few weeks ago. This is something that people are seeing their own is that are feeling in their own lungs and we may surpass one point five degree warming threshold but we have a window of opportunity to prevent the most dire outcomes and save lives. We need to take this opportunity with the stakes being so high. So i'm curious for your perspective on this. Why do you think that climate change is such difficult political circumstances. Why is climate a political problem. I think the basic problem is that the science around this has gotten polarized much like everything else in our society. The republican party in the united states is one of the only few in the international community that reject climate science than don't think that burning fossil fuels is a systemic problem. This may be due to the fact that the republican party is.

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