Rejoining the Paris Climate Accord that was first signed in 2015 and abandoned in 2017 under Donald Trump’s presidency to curb global warming and address the climate crisis seems to hold utmost priority in Biden’s to-do list, as he announced this only hours after swearing-in as the new President of the US.
The New President And The Paris Climate Accord:
Biden’s predecessor President Donald Trump pulled out of the Paris Climate Accord in 2017. While criticism of Trump’s administration policies that went into weakening the guard rails of environmental and climatic issues stayed afloat, President Joe Biden issued orders to federal agencies to reverse all the previous policies that pertained to the negligence of the climate crisis and proved hazardous to the environment.
The intention of the Biden administration to cancel the Keystone XL pipeline project from Canada to the US is a step in this regard that affirms the strong resolution of Biden and his team to consider climate change and the environmental crisis in severity. The US $2 trillion economic plan that would serve as an impetus towards clean energy transition, bring down Carbon emissions by 2035 and achieve Net-Zero emissions by 2050 is part of Biden’s climate agenda.
Due to the pandemic, the UN Climate Summit-scheduled for last fall is now rescheduled for November 2021 in Glasgow, Scotland. As all eyes would be fixed on the US for its target roll-out, the Biden team plans to cut down Greenhouse Gas emissions strategically by 2030. It plans to consult the primary stakeholders first including Congress, Labour Unions, private businesses, Mayors and Governors, before springing into action.
With the US being the second-largest emitter of Greenhouse Gases after China, it becomes all the more important to see how the US rolls out its Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC) in Glasgow and remains true to its commitment. The last few years of Trump’s presidency saw the global average temperature surge.
To maintain the global temperature rise below 1.5 degrees celsius is the goal of the Paris Climate Accord. Due to the pandemic, the US carbon emissions dropped considerably but with things returning back to normalcy, this is feared to bounce back. How the Biden administration takes care of this remains to be seen.