Politics

POLITICS

On November 4, 2020, the United States formally left the Paris Agreement. Originally adopted in 2015, and aimed at limiting the increase in global average temperature to well below 2 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels, President Joe Biden, on his first day in office, rejoined the Paris Agreement (which took effect on February 19, 2021) and appointed John Kerry as his energy czar. As Biden’s Special Presidential Envoy for Climate, John Kerry will play perhaps the most critical role internationally in managing a planetary crisis. To succeed, he’ll need to repair the diplomatic damage done by former President Donald Trump while steering through clashing interests at home: a defiant private sector on the one hand, and strident climate activists on the other.

There are now 24 states, and the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, taking part in the U.S. Climate Alliance, committing them to taking real, on the ground action that urgently addresses the climate challenge. In becoming an Alliance member, states commit to:

  • Implementing policies that advance the goals of the Paris Agreement, aiming to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by at least 26-28 percent below 2005 levels by 2025;
  • Tracking and reporting progress to the global community in appropriate settings, including when the world convenes to take stock of the Paris Agreement.
  • Accelerating new and existing policies to reduce carbon pollution and promote clean energy deployment at the state and federal level.

More political information is explored on pages within these sections: LOCAL POLITICSNATIONAL POLITICSINTERNATIONAL, as well as in LAWS AND LITIGATION. There is in depth information, state by state, in STATES (under the LEARN MORE dropdown menu), including individual state plans to accelerate renewables, key resources, and news.

A stunning timeline, following our nation’s extraordinary lack of progress since 1988, was written by Paul Bledsoe and published in the New York Times on December 29, 2018. This has, unfortunately, not been updated.

Please see the Biden’s Climate Plan page which details the extraordinary commitment his administration is making to climate change.

CURRENT NEWS

A guide to electric car misinformation (part 2)

By Emily Atkin 04/03/24
Last week, we talked about the recent uptick in politically-motivated electric vehicle misinformation, and went through some of the most prevalent myths and misleading claims about EV policy. This week, we’ll be going through some…
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Fed Blocks Tough Global Climate Rules for Wall Street Banks

By Alastair Marsh 04/03/24
US regulators, led by the Federal Reserve, have thwarted a push to make climate risk a focus of global financial rules, according to people familiar with the matter. European central bankers have been advocating for…
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The Gas Industry Gutted Green Building Codes. Now, Republicans Want To Go Further.

By Alexander C. Kaufman 03/28/24
A week ago, fossil fuel companies pulled off an 11th-hour win in their fight to keep climate-friendly measures out of the next national homebuilding guidelines, successfully lobbying the private entity that writes the country’s model…
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IEA takes heat as GOP alleges shift from energy security

By Ben Geman 03/27/24
Senior Capitol Hill Republicans are pressing the International Energy Agency for information on its analytical decisions, accusing the multilateral body of straying from its energy security mission. Why it matters: The GOP move elevates criticism…
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A guide to electric car misinformation (part 1)

By Emily Atkin 03/27/24
The closer we get to the 2024 presidential election, the more sketchy information you’re going to hear about electric cars. Both Joe Biden and Donald Trump have decided to make electric cars central to their…
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Did you know your car could be a political statement? Biden and Trump views clash on EVs

By Trevor Hughes 03/26/24
SUV driver Darlene Wilson unexpectedly found herself behind the steering wheel of a Tesla electric car after someone crashed into her family's Chevrolet Traverse. Driving hundreds of miles a week, with two kids to haul…
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Trump amps up attacks on electric vehicles, a major Biden priority

By Zack Budryk 03/21/24
Former President Trump has escalated his rhetoric against electric vehicles (EVs) on the campaign trail, including in key swing states poised to benefit from investments in EV manufacturing. The former president’s frequently apocalyptic language around…
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Biden’s tailpipe rule will put voters in driver’s seat on future of EVs

By Josh Siegel and James Bikales 03/21/24
President Joe Biden’s new rule that will juice sales of electric vehicles is drawing praise from environmentalists, a powerful union and even the carmakers who will have to build and sell the cars.
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Inside the Republican Attacks on Electric Vehicles

By Coral Davenport, Lisa Friedman and Jack Ewing 03/21/24
The electric vehicle, a breakthrough achievement in automotive technology, has driven into this year’s presidential election, inflaming partisan fights that have come to define much of American culture.
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Al Gore’s Climate Chief On Biden’s Record, Nuclear, And What Happens If Trump Wins

By Alexander C. Kaufman 03/20/24
In 2006, shortly after the release of his groundbreaking documentary “An Inconvenient Truth,” former Vice President Al Gore invited 50 would-be climate activists to his Tennessee barn for a training session on how to raise…
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Biden seeks to accelerate the EV transition in biggest climate move yet

By Maxine Joselow 03/20/24
The Biden administration finalized the United States’ toughest limits on planet-warming emissions from passenger cars and light trucks Wednesday, in a controversial bid to accelerate the nation’s halting transition to electric vehicles.
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Joe Biden and Donald Trump Have Thoughts About Your Next Car

By Zoe Schlanger 03/20/24
The Biden administration earlier today issued a major new rule intended to spur the country’s electric-vehicle industry and slash future sales of new gas-powered cars. The rule is not a ban on gas cars, nor…
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MORE NEWS

How a Trump presidency could threaten Biden’s signature climate achievement

By Rachel Frazin   03/20/24  
Democrats’ sweeping Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) has fueled significant progress in the fight against climate change since its passage in 2022. But if former President Trump wins back the presidency in November, he’s likely to…
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Fossil Fuel Cash Is Fracking Democrats’ Climate Support

By Josh Keefe   03/20/24  
When President Joe Biden announced in January that he was temporarily halting approvals of new liquefied natural gas exports and processing terminals, Emma Guevara welcomed the news. A resident of Brownsville, Texas — a historically…
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Trump’s Violent Language Toward EVs

By Lisa Friedman   03/18/24  
Former President Donald J. Trump says that his recent warning of a “blood bath” if he is not elected president in November was made in the context of electric vehicles and that he was not…
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Joe Manchin: Our energy policy is a success. President Biden should be proud.

By Joe Manchin III   03/18/24  
I’m going to do something you probably haven’t heard me do much in the past three years: I want to congratulate President Biden for the record-breaking energy production we are seeing in America today. The…
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Biden’s Climate Agenda Is Actually Popular

By Robinson Meyer   03/14/24  
s President Joe Biden prepares to run for re-election, one fact has eluded much notice: His climate change policies are pretty popular. In an exclusive Heatmap poll of 1,000 Americans conducted by Benenson Strategy Group…
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Biden Vows to ‘Save the Planet From the Climate Crisis’

By Lisa Friedman   03/08/24  
President Biden spoke about global warming in stark terms during the State of the Union address Thursday night, ditching the more sterile term “climate change” to instead refer twice to the climate “crisis.” President Biden…
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Analysis: Trump election win could add 4bn tonnes to US emissions by 2030

By Simon Evans and Verner Viisainen   03/06/24  
A victory for Donald Trump in November’s presidential election could lead to an additional 4bn tonnes of US emissions by 2030 compared with Joe Biden’s plans, Carbon Brief analysis reveals. This extra 4bn tonnes of…
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How a Climate Rule Got Watered Down

By David Gelles   03/05/24  
What should companies have to tell their investors about climate change risks? The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission will unveil its long-awaited disclosure rules tomorrow. They are expected to be much weaker, Reuters reported, than…
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Trump’s Green-Bashing and Europe’s Right Put Climate Goals at Risk

By Laura Millan and Others   02/27/24  
Politicians are vowing to roll back green policies and downplaying climate change ahead of key elections on both sides of the Atlantic, casting doubt on whether countries can maintain momentum in the transition away from…
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Record Heat, Rising Sea Levels: The Stakes for the Climate Couldn’t Be Higher in 2024 Elections

By Marcus Baram   02/27/24  
In the presidential contest, the contrast is distinct. President Joe Biden’s massive climate initiatives and tougher environmental regulations are sure to drive turnout on both sides of the political aisle. And likely Republican nominee Donald…
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In pivotal Michigan, the electric vehicle transition jolts a Biden-Trump rematch

By Jim Puzzanghera   02/25/24  
Dan Mayville, a skilled trades worker at a Ford engine factory, readily admitted that United Auto Workers negotiators last fall scored an excellent contract with “sick money” for employees like him after a strike against…
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Let’s Build a Climate Wall of Shame

By Nate Loewentheil   02/23/24  
Here is a proposal for the environmental movement: Pool philanthropic funds for a day, buy a small plot of land in Washington, D.C., and put up a tall marble wall to serve as a climate…
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For Michigan’s Economy, Electric Vehicles Are Promising and Scary

By Peter S. Goodman   02/20/24  
Last fall, Tiffanie Simmons, a second-generation autoworker, endured a six-week strike at the Ford Motor factory just west of Detroit where she builds Bronco S.U.V.s. That yielded a pay raise of 25 percent over the…
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Republican Attacks on Biden’s Climate Law Raise Concerns Ahead of Election

By Madeleine Ngo   02/19/24  
The United States has experienced a surge in clean energy projects, representing more than $200 billion in new investments since President Biden signed an expansive climate bill into law more than a year ago. But…
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New York lobbyists ‘aiding and abetting’ climate crisis, research reveals

By Ava Sasani   02/19/24  
New research reveals that dozens of New York universities, hospitals, museums and non-profits are employing lobbyists that also work for fossil fuel companies, which some say is blatantly “aiding and abetting” the climate crisis.
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Biden administration weighs slowing the shift to electric vehicles

By Maxine Joselow   02/18/24  
The Environmental Protection Agency is considering relaxing one of its most significant climate change rules — tailpipe emissions limits for cars and trucks — by giving automakers more time to boost sales of electric vehicles,…
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Biden vs. Trump: Do young climate voters care?

By Zack Colman   02/18/24  
Environmental activists urging President Joe Biden to wage a stronger fight against climate change are facing an agonizing strategic decision: How hard can they push him without risking throwing the election to Donald Trump?
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No, Wind Farms Aren’t ‘Driving Whales Crazy’

By Lisa Friedman   02/16/24  
As the South Carolina Republican primary approaches, former President Donald J. Trump, the front-runner, is increasingly hammering President Biden with inaccurate statements on energy issues.
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Trump vs. an emerging Republican climate strategy

By Emma Dumain and Timothy Cama   02/16/24  
Former President Donald Trump’s hard-line positions on climate change aren’t deterring some members of his party from backing policies to stop global warming.
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Column: A climate voters’ guide to the California Senate election

By Sammy Roth   02/15/24  
If you live in California and confronting the climate crisis is one of your top priorities, I wouldn’t blame you for not knowing whom to vote for in the U.S. Senate primary election.
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MAGA Republicans Have a 920-Page Plan to Make Climate Change Worse. Here’s What It Says.

By Jeva Lange   02/15/24  
When former President Donald Trump exited the Oval Office in January 2021, he left behind a record of environmental rollbacks unrivaled in modern U.S. history. Over his 1,461 days as commander-in-chief, Trump replaced, eliminated, or…
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Political changes can’t derail clean energy shift, IEA head says

By Hannah Northey   02/14/24  
The head of the world’s energy agency on Wednesday said a shift in U.S. leadership won’t hamper the global shift to cleaner energy.
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What Joe Biden can learn from Andrew Cuomo on climate politics

By Scott Waldman   02/09/24  
President Joe Biden’s pause on liquefied natural gas export permitting means he now finds himself in a remarkably similar position to where former New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo was a decade ago. In the short…
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When a climate change denier becomes governor: Jeff Landry’s first month in office

By Terry L. Jones   02/07/24  
In his first four weeks in office, Louisiana Republican Gov. Jeff Landry has filled the ranks of state environmental posts with fossil fuel industry executives.
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This is the year of the climate election. Journalists should cover it that way | Mark Hertsgaard and Kyle Pope

By John Crace   02/07/24  
Fact one: more voters face national elections in 2024 than ever before in recorded history – about 4 billion people, nearly half the human population.
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‘In a word, horrific’: Trump’s extreme anti-environment blueprint

By Oliver Milman and Dharna Noor   02/06/24  
The United States’s first major climate legislation dismantled, a crackdown on government scientists, a frenzy of oil and gas drilling, the Paris climate deal not only dead but buried. A blueprint is emerging for a…
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US counties are blocking the future of renewable energy: These maps, graphics show how

By Elizabeth Weise and others   02/04/24  
The U.S. has set a goal to reach 100% clean energy by 2035, but a nationwide analysis by USA TODAY shows that achieving it is increasingly unlikely – local governments are banning green power faster…
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Ignoring Indigenous rights is making the green transition more expensive

By Anita Hofschneider   02/02/24  
In December, a federal judge found that Enel Green Power, an Italian energy corporation operating an 84-turbine wind farm on the Osage Reservation for nearly a decade, had trespassed on Native land. The ruling was…
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Trump Allies Plan to Gut Climate Research if He Is Reelected

By Scott Waldman and E&E News   02/02/24  
Dozens of conservative organizations have banded together to provide Trump a road map — known as Project 2025 — if he prevails in November. It outlines a series of steps that the former president could…
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Patagonia’s Profits Are Funding Conservation — and Politics

By David Gelles and Kenneth P. Vogel   01/30/24  
A little more than $3 million to block a proposed mine in Alaska. Another $3 million to conserve land in Chile and Argentina. And $1 million to help elect Democrats around the country, including $200,000…
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Democrats Say Biden Hasn’t ‘Made the Case’ on Climate Despite Achievements

By Lisa Friedman   01/27/24  
President Biden has done more than any president to tackle climate change, but strategists are grappling with an uncomfortable fact: Voters don’t seem to know it. Mr. Biden has orchestrated the biggest ever federal investment…
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Biden Paused New LNG Terminals. The Real Test of the Climate Movement Begins Now.

By Robinson Meyer   01/26/24  
Perhaps the biggest political test of the climate movement has now arrived. There are a few ways to think about this. But first, the facts: The Biden administration will temporarily stop approving new liquified natural…
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Jane Goodall Says 2024 is the ‘Most Consequential Voting Year’

By David Gelles   01/23/24  
When I caught up with Jane Goodall in 2019, she was calling on consumers and businesses to make responsible choices and protect the natural world.
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DeSantis Called for ‘Energy Dominance’ During White House Run. His Plan Still is Relevant to Floridians, Who Face Intensifying Climate Impacts

By Amy Green   01/22/24  
Established by rocket scientists on a sliver of a barrier island south of Kennedy Space Center in the middle of the 20th century, this community is the sort of place where locals raise families after…
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New EPA rule could save 4,200 lives a year. Industry warns it could cost Biden his reelection.

By Maxine Joselow   01/19/24  
The Environmental Protection Agency is preparing to significantly strengthen limits on fine particle matter, one of the nation’s most widespread deadly air pollutants, even as industry groups warn that the standard could erase manufacturing jobs…
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Climate crisis ignored by Republicans as Trump vows to ‘drill, baby, drill’

By Oliver Milman   01/18/24  
In the wake of an Iowa primary election chilled in a record blast of cold weather – which scientists say may, counterintuitively, have been worsened by global heating – Republican presidential candidates are embracing the…
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Ten climate questions for 2024

By Joe Lo and Matteo Civillini   12/29/23  
While 2023’s climate questions depended largely on governments and big bankers, 2024 is one of those years where the fate of the world rests in the hands of ordinary people.
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Trudeau says he’s concerned about what a Trump win would mean for climate action

By Aaron Wherry   12/22/23  
Asked by the CBC's Rosemary Barton this week about the prospect of Donald Trump returning to the White House, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau initially fell back on the fact that every American administration (Trudeau has…
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How 2023 changed the way states do climate policy

By Adam Aton   12/21/23  
Minnesota Democrats, newly in control of the state government, began 2023 by enacting a clean electricity standard. Michigan lawmakers followed suit months later — as one of their final acts before gaveling out for the…
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Pipeline politics await Biden in Michigan

By Adam Aton   12/08/23  
President Joe Biden has spent the past two years trying to sidestep pipeline politics. But a recent decision from Michigan promises to thrust the issue back onto the presidential campaign trail.
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How the World Bank’s new boss is navigating a clash over climate change

By Steven Mufson   11/20/23  
Fighting climate change increasingly comes down to money — who has it, who doesn’t and who has the levers to help the world’s developing countries withstand the ravages of climate change.
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Cape Cod residents say no to offshore wind transmission lines under beaches

By Sabrina Shankman   11/14/23  
The scene at Barnstable High School on a recent Monday night felt like a homecoming rally — all anxious energy, cheers, and hugs. A crush of bodies flooded the hallway as revelers greeted friends and…
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Joe Manchin Was America’s De Facto Climate King

By Robinson Meyer   11/10/23  
What can you say about Joe Manchin, perhaps the most important — and most complicated — American climate policy maker of the past decade? Let’s start here: Soon, he won’t be a senator any more.…
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The Green Fuel That Even Red America Loves

By Phred Dvorak   11/05/23  
The Biden administration’s climate push has gotten little love from the other side of the aisle.
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Q&A: The League of Conservation Voters’ Take on House Speaker Mike Johnson’s Voting Record: ‘Appalling’

By Jenni Doering   11/04/23  
“To call him a climate skeptic is generous,” says the league’s Tiernan Sittenfeld. “He's said outrageous things about climate change, and what's causing it, whether he believes it's happening.”
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Republicans Propose One of the Year’s Most Interesting Climate Bills

By Robinson Meyer   11/03/23  
One of the year’s most interesting climate policies was just proposed … by a Republican. Two, actually. On Thursday, Senators Bill Cassidy and Lindsey Graham released a bill that would establish a “foreign pollution fee,”…
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Trump Gets Fined in Court but Wins in the House

By Amy Davidson Sorkin   10/29/23  
There were moments, last week, when—if not for the first time—Donald Trump seemed out of control. On Monday, at a rally in Derry, New Hampshire, he compared himself to Nelson Mandela; said that he had…
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Republican-led US states appeal ruling allowing Biden ESG investing rule

By Daniel Wiessner   10/27/23  
A group of Republican-led U.S. states on Thursday said they would appeal a Texas-based federal judge's decision rejecting their challenge to a rule from President Joe Biden's administration allowing employee retirement plans to consider environmental,…
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House Speaker Mike Johnson’s First Big Bill Cuts Biden’s Climate Change Funding

By Ari Natter   10/27/23  
The first major legislation House Republicans passed under newly installed Speaker Mike Johnson would cut billions of dollars in consumer rebates for energy efficiency upgrades included in President Joe Biden’s signature climate law...
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New House Speaker Champions Fossil Fuels and Dismisses Climate Concerns

By Lisa Friedman   10/26/23  
Representative Mike Johnson of Louisiana, the newly elected House speaker, has questioned climate science, opposed clean energy and received more campaign contributions from oil and gas companies than from any other industry last year.
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