Joe Biden signed a series of executive orders inside the White House on Wednesday, minutes after taking charge of the developments as the 46th President of the USA. Of the many orders signed with an intention to promote clean energy mechanisms, Biden reinstated US to the Paris Climate Agreement, prioritising the rising issue of global warming, and to address the climate crisis. America is the second largest country to emit greenhouse gases after China. He also mandated wearing of masks in all federal buildings, to ensure safety for all from the pandemic.
In 2017, under Trump administration, US withdrew from the Paris agreement that has at least 200 signatories as its members including India. Biden vowed to sign the Paris agreement on his first day inside The Oval Office. America played a key role when the Paris agreement was being composed, as it aims to maintain the global temperatures from not rising over 2 degrees Celcius, and preferably less than 1.5 degrees Celcius by the end of this century that is by 2100. The temperature in most of the regions around the world has increased by one degree at least, in past few years.
It will take 30-days for the US to officially rejoin the agreement, from the day of signing the Paris climate order. Biden is determined to make America carbon-neutral by 2050, while he aims to reduce all the greenhouse gas emissions from country’s electric sector by 2035. Carbon emissions in US have comparatively reduced from the past decade as the coal plants have retired, and most industries are now trying to use renewable energy like solar and wind. Biden signature on the Paris agreement has sent a message to the entire world that the US is serious in tackling the climate crisis.
Also the amount of carbon emitted during the production of electricity and from vehicles has to be curtailed. However, carbon emission from vehicles has reached far more when compared to the emissions from electricity generation, in the US. Todd Stern who was the lead US negotiator is Paris was quoted by The Guardian as saying, “It’s just a huge day to get rid of this myopic, benighted administration and welcome in a new president who manifestly is committed to strong, meaningful action. Rejoining Paris is just the first step, but it’s a big first step.”
In addition, Biden’s top climate adviser Gina McCarthy said that Biden will reverse at least a 100 climate policies that were regulated by Trump. The return of US to the Paris agreement was lauded by many world leaders including the French President Emmanuel Macron who welcomed the move by Biden. We are together. “We will be stronger to face the challenges of our time. Stronger to build our future. Stronger to protect our planet,” Macron asserted.
The UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres also hailed the decision over US’ re-entry into the Paris agreement and said that it was a big step for all the global carbon emitters. “We look forward to the leadership of US in accelerating global efforts towards net zero emissions,” as he called for “ambitious new targets for 2030 and expanded climate finance.”
The many steps to be taken by Biden to reduce carbon emissions is likely to get US a seat in the Conference of the Parties (COP), in Glasgow that will be held in November 2021. Climate change and resolutions to use renewable sources of energy will be some key points that will be discussed here.