Biden announces pledge to cut US emissions in half by 2030
President Joe Biden announced on Thursday that the U.S. is pledging to cut greenhouse gas emissions in half by 2030. Biden discussed his ambitious target as part of the United States new commitment to the Paris climate agreement. During the White House’s Earth Day summit, 40 world leaders met virtually and discussed their ambitions for reducing greenhouse gases.
“The United States isn’t waiting; we are resolving to take action,” said President Biden. He aims to take action by enhancing electric vehicle production, investing in agriculture to store carbon in soil, and building green hydrogen plants. “By maintaining those investments and putting these people to work, the United States sets out on the road to cut greenhouse gases in half by the end of this decade.” Also, Biden believes that addressing climate change provides business leaders with an opportunity to create millions of new jobs worldwide.
After China, the U.S. is currently the second largest greenhouse gas emitter. The U.S. withdrew from the Paris climate accord in late 2020 during Donald Trump’s presidency. However, President Biden pledged to return the U.S. to the Paris agreement and ensured to keep the fight against climate change as a top priority. John Kerry, the envoy on climate change, discussed how Biden was “restoring America’s credibility and commitment”. He believes that the world “must and will raise ambition” to help fight global warming. “Scientists tell us that this is the decisive decade – this is the decade we must make decisions that will avoid the worst consequences of the climate crisis,” President Biden said at the virtual summit.
Although this is the biggest U.S. commitment to date, some activists believe that it is not enough. In fact, many believe that a fairer target would be closer to a 70 percent cut in emissions.