Today, President Joe Biden, with the help of Special Presidential Envoy for Climate John Kerry, made good on campaign promises for sweeping climate change reform.

Biden signed emergency climate change orders into effect Wednesday afternoon after a morning press briefing with Kerry in a move that starkly contrasts the previous administration’s attitude.

In a briefing earlier in the day, Kerry spoke about (see above) how the current administration would like to establish climate as a key element of foreign policy and national security. “Three years ago, scientists gave us a pretty stark warning,” Kerry said.

“They said we have 12 years within which to avoid the worst consequences of climate change. And now we have nine years left. And I regret that my country has been absent for three of those years.”

Kerry is referring to when Trump decided to leave the Paris Climate Accord in 2017, which Biden rejoined as part of his sweeping initial executive measures in office.


Key components of the Biden administration’s climate change plan involve:

  • Reducing carbon emissions to 0 percent by 2035
  • Created official climate policy task forces
  • Conserve at least 30 percent of land and water by 2030
  • A freeze/halt on new oil and gas leases on federal lands

In addition to these environmental protective measures, Biden wants to “produce zero emission vehicles that are made and sourced in America,” creating 1 million new jobs in the U.S. automobile industry. He also announced a U.S.-hosted climate leaders summit on Earth Day, April 22.

“This coordinated, whole-of-government approach strengthens workers and the economy: creating good-paying American union jobs and powering growth by rebuilding our nation’s infrastructure in a climate-resilient way,” said Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi in an official statement.

“These Executive Actions will not only reverse the Trump special interest, dirty energy agenda but will Build Back Better – expanding on House Democrats’ progress to finally take our country into a net zero-emissions, clean energy future.”