WRAL WeatherCenter Blog

U.S. rejoins Paris climate accord

Posted January 21, 2021 5:28 p.m. EST

One of the many executive orders that President Biden signed on his first day in office allows the U.S. to rejoin the Paris Climate Accord. In an effort to reduce their carbon emissions, nearly every country in the world joined the Paris Agreement in 2016. Former President Trump withdrew the U.S. from the agreement back in 2017. This is President Biden's first major action to tackle the climate crisis.

The U.S. is the world’s second largest emitter of greenhouse gases. China takes first place.

Biden will have the largest team of climate change experts ever in the White House, proving that he is ready to tackle global warming.

During the past year, China, the nations of the European Union, Japan and South Korea made bold promises to cut their emissions to net-zero by 2050. Biden wants the U.S. to achieve net-zero carbon emissions by 2050, as well.

So, what specifically does Biden want to do to tackle the climate in crisis? Here are some of the specific items:

  1. Cancel construction permits of the Keystone XL Pipeline.
  2. Tighten regulations and rules to curb methane emissions and carbon emissions from coal and gas-fired plants.
  3. $1.7 trillion economic plan for a clean energy transition.
  4. Conserve 30% of America’s land and waters by 2030.
  5. Permanently protect the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge from drilling.
  6. Targeted programs to enhance reforestation.
  7. 500,000 new public charging outlets by 2030 for electric vehicles.

Climate change has led to more extreme weather events, warming oceans, sea level rise and shrinking arctic ice. North Carolina is feeling the impacts of climate change right now.

Biden’s executive action for the U.S. to rejoin the Paris Climate Accord, the largest international effort to curb climate change, signals that the U.S. is serious about our climate in crisis. The U.S. will join other world leaders later this year in Glasgow to announce new climate pledges.

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