“As the U.S. takes steps to make domestic polluters bear the full cost of their carbon pollution, the Biden Administration will impose carbon adjustment fees or quotas on carbon-intensive goods from countries that are failing to meet their climate and environmental obligations.”
“Name and shame global climate outlaws…. A Biden Administration will institute a new Global Climate Change Report to hold countries to account for meeting, or failing to meet, their Paris commitments and for other steps that promote or undermine global climate solutions.”
“Biden’s Day One Unprecedented Executive Actions to Drive Historic Progress:
- Requiring aggressive methane pollution limits for new and existing oil and gas operations.
- Using the Federal government procurement system – which spends $500 billion every year – to drive towards 100% clean energy and zero-emissions vehicles.
- Ensuring that all U.S. government installations, buildings, and facilities are more efficient and climate-ready, harnessing the purchasing power and supply chains to drive innovation.
- Reducing greenhouse gas emissions from transportation – the fastest growing source of U.S. climate pollution – by preserving and implementing the existing Clean Air Act, and developing rigorous new fuel economy standards aimed at ensuring 100% of new sales for light- and medium-duty vehicles will be electrified and annual improvements for heavy duty vehicles.
- Doubling down on the liquid fuels of the future, which make agriculture a key part of the solution to climate change. Advanced biofuels are now closer than ever as we begin to build the first plants for biofuels, creating jobs and new solutions to reduce emissions in planes, ocean-going vessels, and more.
- Saving consumers money and reduce emissions through new, aggressive appliance- and building-efficiency standards.
- Committing that every federal infrastructure investment should reduce climate pollution, and require any federal permitting decision to consider the effects of greenhouse gas emissions and climate change.
- Requiring public companies to disclose climate risks and the greenhouse gas emissions in their operations and supply chains.
- Protecting biodiversity, slowing extinction rates and helping leverage natural climate solutions by conserving 30% of America’s lands and waters by 2030.
- Protecting America’s natural treasures by permanently protecting the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge and other areas impacted by President Trump’s attack on federal lands and waters, establishing national parks and monuments that reflect America’s natural heritage, banning new oil and gas permitting on public lands and waters, modifying royalties to account for climate costs, and establishing targeted programs to enhance reforestation and develop renewables on federal lands and waters with the goal of doubling offshore wind by 2030.
Biden will establish ARPA-C, a new, cross-agency Advanced Research Projects Agency focused on climate. This initiative will target affordable, game-changing technologies to help America achieve our 100% clean energy target, with a specific focus on the following, as recommended by the founding director of ARPA-E:
- grid-scale storage at one-tenth the cost of lithium-ion batteries;
- small modular nuclear reactors at half the construction cost of today’s reactors;
- refrigeration and air conditioning using refrigerants with no global warming potential;
- zero net energy buildings at zero net cost;
- using renewables to produce carbon-free hydrogen at the same cost as that from shale gas;
- decarbonizing industrial heat needed to make steel, concrete, and chemicals and reimagining carbon-neutral construction materials;
- decarbonizing the food and agriculture sector, and leveraging agriculture to remove carbon dioxide from the air and store it in the ground; and
- capturing carbon dioxide from power plant exhausts followed by sequestering it deep underground or using it make alternative products.
Re-enter the Paris Agreement on day one of the Biden Administration and lead a major diplomatic push to raise the ambitions of countries’ climate targets….
- Convene a climate world summit to directly engage the leaders of the major carbon-emitting nations of the world to persuade them to join the United States in making more ambitious national pledges, above and beyond the commitments they have already made.
- Lead the world to lock-in enforceable international agreements to reduce emissions in global shipping and aviation.
- Embrace the Kigali Amendment to the Montreal Protocol, adding momentum to curbing hydrofluorocarbons, an especially potent greenhouse gas, which could deliver a 0.5 degree Celsius reduction in global warming by mid-century.
Make climate change a core national security priority.
“Invest in coal and power plant communities and other communities impacted by the climate transformation…. We can’t write them off or act like they don’t matter.”
To accelerate this progress, President Biden will make the largest-ever investment in clean energy research and innovation…. The Biden plan will double down on this approach to create the industries of the future by investing $400 billion over ten years.
Biden [will] incentivize the creation of new, sustainable fuels for aircraft, as well as other changes to aircraft technology and standards, and air traffic management.
Accelerate the development and deployment of carbon capture sequestration technology. …. Biden shares the Carbon Capture Coalition’s goal “to make CCUS a widely available, cost-effective, and rapidly scalable solution to reduce carbon emissions to meet mid-century climate goals.” Toward this end, he will double down on federal investments and enhance tax incentives for CCUS. At the same time, to bring new carbon capture technologies to market, Biden will continue to fund carbon capture research, development, and demonstration.
Identify the future of nuclear energy. To address the climate emergency threatening our communities, economy, and national security, we must look at all low- and zero-carbon technologies…. Biden will support a research agenda through ARPA-C to look at issues, ranging from cost to safety to waste disposal systems, that remain an ongoing challenge with nuclear power today.
Incentivize the deployment of clean technology throughout our economy.
- Improving the energy efficiency of our buildings…. [by setting] a target of reducing the carbon footprint of the U.S. building stock 50% by 2035, creating incentives for deep retrofits that combine appliance electrification, efficiency, and on-site clean power generation. …
- Accelerating the deployment of electric vehicles.…Biden will support the deployment of more than 500,000 new public charging outlets by the end of 2030. In addition, Biden will restore the full electric vehicle tax credit to incentivize the purchase of these vehicles. He will ensure the tax credit is designed to targeted middle class consumers and, to the greatest extent possible, to prioritize the purchase of vehicles made in America. And, he will work to develop a new fuel economy standard that goes beyond what the Obama-Biden Administration put in place.
- Empowering local communities to develop transportation solutions. ….
- Partnering with farmers and ranchers so that better agriculture practices and deployment of digesters generate new sources of revenues. . …. Biden will will create new opportunities to support deployment of methane digesters to capture potent climate emissions and generate electricity.
- Mitigating the climate impact of urban sprawl. ….
- Enacting a national strategy to develop a low-carbon manufacturing sector in every state …. Allocated tax credits and subsidies will be available for businesses to upgrade equipment and processes, invest in expanded or new factories, and deploy low-carbon technologies….
Specifically, the U.S. will:
- Make future bilateral U.S.-China agreements on carbon mitigation – like the 2014 agreement that paved the way for the Paris accord – contingent on China eliminating unjustified export subsidies for coal and other high-emissions technologies and making verifiable progress in reducing the carbon footprint of projects connected to the Belt and Road Initiative.
- Seek a G20 commitment to end all export finance subsidies of high-carbon projects, building on past commitments from the G7 and multilateral export finance institutions to eliminate financing for coal in all but the poorest countries.
- With our partners, offer Belt and Road Initiative countries alternative sources of development financing for lower-carbon energy investments.
- Reform the International Monetary Fund and regional development bank standards on debt repayment priorities for development projects. The U.S. will lead like-minded nations to establish rules that take unsustainable climate and debt costs – such as those imposed by self-interested Chinese projects – into account in prioritizing who gets paid under international debt forbearance. Projects with high carbon impact and high debt costs will go to the end of the line, making them higher risk and more costly.
Demand a worldwide ban on fossil fuel subsidies.
Create a Clean Energy Export and Climate Investment Initiative.
No financing dirty energy. President Biden will ensure the Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC), the Export-Import Bank, and the new U.S. International Development Finance Corporation significantly reduce the carbon footprints of their portfolios.
Meet America’s climate finance pledge and provide “green debt relief” for developing countries that make climate commitments. Biden will recommit the United States to the Green Climate Fund…
Catalyze Global Clean Energy Research.
Name and shame global climate outlaws. …. A Biden Administration will institute a new Global Climate Change Report to hold countries to account for meeting, or failing to meet, their Paris commitments and for other steps that promote or undermine global climate solutions.”
“Pursue a global moratorium on offshore drilling in the Arctic and reestablish climate change as a priority for the Arctic Council.”
“Strengthen collaboration and ambition in the Americas…. This strategy will include:
- A framework to limit greenhouse gas emissions related to land use, forests, and agriculture.
- New common standards for the greening of manufacturing, mining, and tourism.
- Major investments in clean-energy technologies.
- A more integrated energy grid from Mexico through Central America and Colombia supplied by increasingly clean energy.
- A special focus on the Caribbean and the Northern Triangle of Central America to promote transitions to clean energy as well as climate change adaptation and resilience.
Steven Overholt has a bachelor of science degree with a double-major in chemistry and biology. He holds six U.S. patents and is author of Mastering Technology Commercialization, Inventions, Patents, Markets, Money (2013).
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August 28, 2021 By Robert Bradley Jr.