By Cassie Stolz
During his campaign, Biden has pledged to sign a series of climate-related executive orders, including a ban on fossil fuel extraction on public land. His climate goals have been described as the most intricate of any U.S presidential candidate in history. Even more so than previous president, John F. Kennedy who was renowned for being the “champion of conservation”. The struggles of entering environmentalism into congress are more limited than ever before in politics. The past few decades, America has strayed from aligning U.S foreign policies with climate goals, and supporting more convenient, cheaper, economically sensible options. Currently economics and environmentalism are competing fields, but do they need to be? What if there are options inclusive to sustainability and affluent economic growth.
Biden’s administration is counting on gaining more flexibility to align U.S. foreign policy with climate goals. This agenda will be largely dependent on if Democrats gain the majority rule from the Senate. The most important senate seats election will take place in Georgia on January 5th between Republican Sen. David Perdue and Democrat Jon Ossoff and between Republican Sen. Kelly Loeffler and Democrat Rev. Raphael Warnock. The first task on in this agenda is immediately rejoining the Paris Agreement. This agreement has a common goal to “strengthen the global response to the threat of climate change by keeping a global temperature rise this century well below 2 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels and to pursue efforts to limit the temperature increase even further to 1.5 degrees Celsius. Additionally, the agreement aims to increase the ability of countries to deal with the impacts of climate change, and at making finance flows consistent with a low GHG emissions and climate” (2020 United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change). The irony of Biden promising this to be his first enactment is that four years ago, pulling out of the agreement was one of the first things President Trump did. A quote from the New York Times on November 4, 2019 recalled President Trump calling “the Paris Agreement ‘job-killing’ and would “punish the American people while enriching foreign polluters.”. Except the agreement doesn’t require the United States to do anything. It’s a nonbinding agreement among nations, of all levels of wealth, who share the responsibility in causing climate change to reduce domestic emissions. The treaties sole purpose is an attempt to bring awareness to the climate change crisis and hold unofficial accountability to countries because the movement needs to be a collaborative effort.
A strong competing argument to any green deal, conversation and decarbonization efforts are these changes in lifestyle will result in a major, impactful loss of jobs. Except the evidence is pretty overwhelming that you actually do get more jobs, better jobs and an income boost from the very first year if you invest in a green recovery. The economic growth will result in an opportunity to transition the U.S. toward renewable energy and other green infrastructure. The support Biden has received from Americans is because of the transparency detailing the job creation impacts of dealing with climate change. Although he wasn’t advocates first choice, he may be one of the first leaders in America to maintain economic growth that does not hinder sustainability efforts, but delegates to an all-inclusive movement.