NATIONAL

NATIONAL

President Joe Biden’s and Vice President Kamala Harris’s victory marks  a new day in the fight for bold, just and equitable climate policy in the United States. It means that the US will now have a leadership that believes in science, knows that climate change is real, and is committed to supporting united and multilateral action.

Biden has assembled a climate team with stunning speed, creating new positions of power within the White House to focus on climate (John Kerry with an eye on the international impacts and Gina McCarthy on domestic goals). He moved instantly on executive orders to both create new regulations and rollback the rollbacks of the previous administration. He moved on day one to reinstate America’s role in the Paris Climate Agreement, which was accomplished on February 19, 2021. He has asked his cabinet to look upon every action through the lens of climate. You might be interesting in following some of his executive actions at The Washington Post’s page tracking his environmental progress.

The democrats now control the White House and Congress, although in the Senate it will take Vice President Kamala Harris to break a tie vote, complicating Biden’s legislative agenda. The president will, nonetheless, will have a wide array of tools — from expanding renewables on federal lands to pushing the financial industry on climate change — that could put the U.S. on a trajectory to decarbonizing its electricity sector by 2035. His goal to accelerate the adoption of electric vehicles was given a huge boost in early February by GM’s announcement that it would shift to 100% electric vehicles by 2035.

For more on what he has already accomplished and what he plans to accomplish, go to Biden’s Climate Plan and to the LAWS AND LITIGATION section where you will find extensive information on what is happening within the federal government, from the Executive branch to the Legislative and Judicial branches.

CURRENT NEWS

KEY RESOURCES

Politics & Global Warming, March 2021

06/04/21
Drawing on a nationally representative survey (n = 1,037; including 922 registered voters), this report describes how Democratic, Independent, and Republican registered voters view climate and energy policies.

Carbon Pricing as a Solution to Climate Change

02/14/20
FCNL believes that carbon pricing is one of many essential tools that Congress should use to address climate change and shift towards a clean energy economy. While we have not endorsed any particular bill at…

The Climate Action Tracker

01/29/19
The Climate Action Tracker (CAT) is an independent scientific analysis produced by three research organisations tracking climate action since 2009. We track progress towards the globally agreed aim of holding warming well below 2°C, and…

The Climate Deregulation Tracker

01/22/19
The Columbia Law School Tracker identifies steps taken by the Trump administration and Congress to scale back or wholly eliminate federal climate mitigation and adaptation measures. The tracker is linked to a database of climate…

Citizens Climate Lobby

01/19/19
Citizens’ Climate Lobby is a non-profit, non-partisan, grassroots advocacy organization focused on national policies to address climate change. By building upon shared values rather than partisan divides, and empowering our supporters to work in keeping…

Carbon Tax Center

01/19/19
The Carbon Tax Center stands at the front lines of the struggle for a sustainable climate and a habitable Earth. Our mission: to generate support to enact a transparent and equitable U.S. carbon pollution tax…

MORE NEWS

How an Electric Truck Factory Became a Lightning Rod in Georgia

By David Gelles  Photo: Matthew Odom   03/14/22  
It is billed as the largest economic development project in the history of Georgia, an electric vehicle factory that could grow to be five times as large as the Pentagon and produce as many as…

The ironic effort to wave away climate change in favor of ‘clean air’

By Philip Bump  Photo: Dan Koeck for The Washington Post   03/03/22  
en. Joe Manchin III (D-W.Va.) appeared on Fox Business on Wednesday to discuss his policy priorities in the wake of President Biden’s State of the Union address. As might have been predicted — given Biden’s…
CNN

GOP and gas lobby preemptively quashed cuts in natural gas usage

By Ella Nilsen   02/17/22  
In 2019, the city council in Berkeley, California, held a stunning vote: it would ban natural gas hookups in all new building construction to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and the city's impact on the climate…

How Politics, Society and Tech Shape the Path of Climate Change

By Kat Kerlin   02/16/22  
Politics and society largely dictate climate policy ambitions and therefore the trajectory of greenhouse gas emissions, yet climate change models and projections rarely include political and social drivers. A study from the University of California,…
GAO

How is the federal government approaching climate resilience?

Photo: Delaware Department of Transportation (2017)   02/01/22  
This past year may go on record as one of the most active and costly years for extreme weather events. As of Oct. 8, there have been 18 such events, each with losses exceeding $1…

In Senate race, leading Pa. Democrat spurns a fracking ban

By Maxine Joselow  Photo: Matt Rourke/AP   01/31/22  
Good morning and welcome to The Climate 202! Today we're wondering what an Infrastructure Bill burger tastes like and if there's a veggie version. But first:

Defusing the Global Climate Emergency Depends on Defusing the Democracy Emergency

By Mark Hertsgaard  Photo: Getty Images   01/07/22  
A year ago today, Mitch McConnell and Kevin McCarthy were fleeing for their lives as a violent mob swarmed the halls of the U.S. Capitol. With their personal safety at risk, the two most powerful…

Behind Manchin’s opposition, a long history of fighting climate measures

By Jonathan Weisman and Lisa Friedman  Photo: Chet Strange for The New York Times   12/20/21  
Senator Joe Manchin III noted climate policy when he said he would vote against the Build Back Better Act. In his life and career, West Virginia coal has loomed large.

One year of ‘President Manchin’

By Ben Terris  Photo: Jabin Botsford/The Washington Post   12/14/21  
Waiting around for Manchin has become something of a pastime in the nation’s capital. Hill reporters track his movements on the Senate floor, staking out his office, sometimes for hours, and then orbiting around him…

Should California Democrats take oil and gas money? The party is torn

By Sammy Roth  Photo: Irfan Khan / Los Angeles Times   10/28/21  
Four hundred thirteen parts per million.That’s how much carbon dioxide was built up in Earth’s atmosphere last year — a record 413.2 parts per million on average, according to the latest data from the World…

Paid leave at risk of falling out of spending package as Biden nears deal with Manchin and Sinema

By Tony Romm, Mike DeBonis and Marianna Sotomayor  Photo: AP Photo/Andrew Harnik   10/27/21  
The White House intensified meetings with 2 senators as they raced to resolve a number of issues in giant tax-and-spending measure.

A key senator presented an alternative power plant program. But will it stick?

By Maxine Joselow  Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images   10/21/21  
Good morning! My colleague Dino Grandoni helped with today’s edition of The Climate 202. Loyal Post readers will remember that Dino used to write The Energy 202, and apparently he missed the newsletter life. 😆…

The Democrats Have a Lot of Cutting to Do

By Margot Sanger-Katz and Alicia Parlapiano   10/20/21  
To win over their most centrist members, the Democrats will need to fit all their wishes into the smaller box.

Climate Activists Start Hunger Strike in Front of White House

10/20/21  
A group of climate activists are beginning a hunger strike outside the White House today to demand Congress and President Biden pass the climate crisis provisions in the reconciliation package. The youth activists made the…
CNN

What’s driving Manchin’s resistance to climate change legislation

By Zachary B. Wolf   10/20/21  
West Virginia Sen. Joe Manchin -- a Democrat -- appears to be intent on ripping the heart out of President Joe Biden's climate change agenda. With his all-powerful 50th vote as leverage, Manchin's reported opposition…

Why fossil fuel subsidies are so hard to kill

By Jocelyn Timperley  Photo: Andrey Rudakov/Bloomberg/Getty   10/20/21  
Fossil-fuel subsidies are one of the biggest financial barriers hampering the world’s shift to renewable energy sources. Each year, governments around the world pour around half a trillion dollars into artificially lowering the price of…

Democrats Are Courting Manchin on Their Agenda. Here’s What He Wants.

By Emily Cochrane  Photo: T.J. Kirkpatrick for The New York Times   10/18/21  
The West Virginia Democrat could decide the fate of President Biden’s top legislative priority, and he has not been shy about outlining the kinds of changes he wants to see.

Democrats Scramble for Climate Options After Manchin Rejects Clean-Energy Plan

By Paola Rosa-Aquino  Photo: Stefani Reynolds/Bloomberg via Getty Images   10/17/21  
The White House is struggling to find a way to significantly address climate change after Democratic senator Joe Manchin reportedly signaled his opposition to ​​President Biden’s clean-power plan, a critical element of his climate agenda.

Democrats Weigh Carbon Tax After Manchin Rejects Key Climate Provision

By Coral Davenport and Luke Broadwater  Photo: Adriana Zehbrauskas for The New York Times   10/16/21  
Faced with the likely demise of a central pillar of President Biden’s agenda, the White House and outraged lawmakers are scrambling to find alternatives.

Key to Biden’s Climate Agenda Likely to Be Cut Because of Manchin Opposition

By Coral Davenport  Photo: T.J. Kirkpatrick for The New York Times   10/15/21  
The West Virginia Democrat told the White House he is firmly against a clean electricity program that is the muscle behind the president’s plan to battle climate change.

Major Climate Action at Stake in Fight Over Twin Bills Pending in Congress

By Brad Plumer and Winston Choi-Schagrin  Photo: Doug Mills/The New York Times   10/15/21  
Legislation aimed at infrastructure and social programs also includes big changes in energy, transportation and disaster preparation. They would amount to the most significant climate action ever taken by the United States.

Sen. Elizabeth Warren Says Manchin and Sinema Don’t Have All the Power

10/13/21  
Sen. Elizabeth Warren talks about Biden’s infrastructure agenda, Sens. Joe Manchin and Kyrsten Sinema and why the Democratic Party needs to show how they can help the American people.

New US Congress Conservative Climate Caucus is Fossil-fuel Friendly

By Michael Barnard   10/13/21  
Recently, Republicans received some favorable climate-related coverage. Utah’s 3rd District Congressman John Curtis announced the formation of a Conservative Climate Caucus. It came with a roster of roughly 60 Congresspeople, none of them particularly well…

Opinion: Don’t Let Inflation Anxiety Undermine Our Future

By Paul Krugman  Photo: Benjamin Norman/Redux   10/12/21  
Even if inflation is a bigger problem than the Biden administration or like-minded economists think it is, however, what are the implications beyond monetary policy? In particular, is the risk of inflation a reason for…

Tensions erupt between environmental justice leaders and White House

By Zack Colman  Photo: Al Drago/Getty Images   10/05/21  
Members of the environmental justice movement sent an email blast more than 5,600 times over a 48-hour period to top Biden administration officials, disrupting White House communication and sparking a tense exchange between the administration’s…

Big Business Is Bankrolling an Effort to Kill the Democratic Climate Bill

By Robinson Meyer  Photo: Lukas Schulze / Getty   10/01/21  
The trade group that represents Apple, Walmart, Nike, and dozens of other companies is trying to kneecap the U.S.’s final chance to meet its 2025 climate goals.

Joe Manchin’s Truly Brutal Ransom Note

By Bill McKibben   10/01/21  
With regard to energy, he made one basic demand, which follow the industry’s line to a T. And it only took five words: “Spending on innovation, not elimination.” In other words: it is permissible to…

Congress approves government funding bill hours before midnight deadline to avert shutdown

By Tony Romm   09/30/21  
The votes in the House and Senate followed weeks of hand wringing between the two parties, after Democrats initially sought to move the measure along with another proposal to raise the country’s debt ceiling. Senate…

API targets climate legislation with Facebook ad blitz

By Scott Waldman  Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images   09/30/21  
Two lobbying groups for the oil and gas industry have bombarded Facebook with hundreds of ads opposing climate legislation in Congress that have been viewed 23 million times. The American Petroleum Institute and the American…

SEIA aims for solar to generate 30 percent of U.S. electricity by 2030, but urges political assistance

By Chris Galford   09/30/21  
The United States solar industry raised its goals for generation this week, as the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) reported a push for solar to represent 30 percent of U.S. electricity generation within the decade.

Joe Manchin, America’s climate decider-in-chief, is a coal baron

By Mark Hertsgaard  Photo: AP   09/30/21  
Joe Manchin has never been this famous. People around the world now know that the West Virginia Democrat is the essential 50th vote in the US Senate that president Joe Biden needs to pass his…

Carbon tax fight brews among Democrats

By Nick Sobczyk, Geof Koss, Emma Dumain  Photo: Francis Chung/E&E News   09/29/21  
Carbon pricing is back in the climate change conversation, but House and Senate Democrats are at odds about the policy as reconciliation talks reach a breaking point. Senate Finance Chair Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) is pushing…

Infrastructure Week At Last? Here’s Everything Congress Aims To Tackle In The Coming Days

By Andrew Solender  Photo: Associated Press   09/26/21  
Congress is slated to have its busiest and most chaotic week this year, with the House set to consider several of President Joe Biden’s proposed spending bills as the Senate tries to simultaneously avert a…

In California, Worsening Fires Show Limits of Biden’s Power

By Christopher Flavelle and Zolan Kanno-Youngs  Photo: Doug Mills , The New York Times   09/14/21  
President Biden visited California on Monday to tout his efforts to better protect the state against the raging wildfires that have burned more than two million acres, displaced thousands and pushed responders to the brink…

House Energy Panel Seeks Billions For EPA To Cut GHGs, Air Pollution

09/10/21  
The House Energy & Commerce Committee is poised to mark up budget reconciliation measures Sept. 13 that would appropriate billions of dollars for EPA to cut greenhouse gases and conventional air pollution, while also imposing…

Microsoft tweets concern for Ida victims while funding climate deniers in Congress

By Emily Atkin  Photo: Twitter   09/07/21  
The world's second-largest company is still bankrolling climate deniers' re-election campaigns, and defending the practice.

The Oil and Gas Industry’s Dangerous Answer to Climate Change

By Sahir Doshi  Photo: Getty/Bonnie Jo Mount   08/25/21  
No one is immune to the effects of the climate crisis—not even those responsible for its causes. Rising sea levels, record heat, unprecedented extreme weather disasters, and increasingly unstable environmental conditions are making it costlier…

Biden Faces Mounting Pressure To Yank Line 3 Oil Pipeline Permits

By Alexander C. Kaufman  Photo: Karem Yucel , Getty Images   08/18/21  
Eight Democratic senators and nearly two dozen House members criticized the Biden administration for allowing pipeline giant Enbridge to continue building Line 3 across wetlands in a letter sent Monday that HuffPost viewed. The lawmakers…

Amid Extreme Weather, a Shift Among Republicans on Climate Change

By Coral Davenport and Lisa Friedman  Photo: T.J. Kirkpatrick   08/13/21  
After a decade of disputing the existence of climate change, many leading Republicans are shifting their posture amid deadly heat waves, devastating drought and ferocious wildfires that have bludgeoned their districts and unnerved their constituents…

Dire UN report on warming planet leaves GOP senators cold

By Ben Lefebvre And Anthony Adragna  Photo: Keith Srakocic/AP Photo   08/11/21  
The United Nations report that found the nations are already facing catastrophic effects from climate change drew a cool reception from Republican senators, who were largely unmoved by the dire warnings.

Why politicians should read the grim climate report

08/11/21  
In the latest climate report released by the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, scientists painted a grim outlook for the world as a result of global warming and an increasing global temperature. For…

Democrats release $3.5 trillion budget blueprint as Senate prepares to finish infrastructure debate

By Tony Romm  Photo: J. Scott Applewhite/AP   08/09/21  
The scope of the spending outlined by Democrats is vast, reflecting the party’s grand ambitions to grow the size and reach of the federal government to a level not seen in decades. The measure paves…

How a federal agency is blocking America’s largest wind farm

By Sammy Roth  Photo: Anschutz Corp.   08/05/21  
Way back in 2019, I asked an energy company owned by one of America’s richest individuals to alert me when they were down to one final landowner standing in the way of their plan to…

The Infrastructure Deal Is Not Not a Climate Bill

By Robinson Meyer  Photo: George Rose / Getty   08/03/21  
Last week, Senate negotiators released the text of the $1.2 trillion bipartisan infrastructure deal. For the first time since the deal was announced in June, we can actually see what’s in it.

The Biden Administration Won’t Explain Its Handout To Big Coal

By Chris D'Angelo  Photo: RJ Sangosti via Getty Images   08/03/21  
One week after being sworn in, President Joe Biden signed a sweeping executive order aimed at “tackling the climate crisis at home and abroad.” It included seemingly clear language about ending subsidies for the industry…

Climate and refugee organizations say Biden has power to help address climate change-driven displacement

By Rebecca Morin   08/02/21  
A cross section of refugee and climate organizations say President Joe Biden can help address refugees driven from their homelands by climate change-related factors by using a number of actions at his disposal.

With bipartisan infrastructure talks in limbo, progressives eye $4.1T ‘silver lining’

By Marianne Levine and others  Photo: Kevin Dietsch/Getty Images   07/22/21  
With bipartisan infrastructure talks trapped in limbo, progressives are already hustling to protect — or even grow — their massive social spending proposal. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer has yet to indicate when exactly he’ll…
IEA

With only 2% of governments’ recovery spending going to clean energy transitions, global emissions are set to surge to an all-time high

07/20/21  
IEA’s new Sustainable Recovery Tracker monitors governments’ fiscal responses to the Covid-19 crisis and estimates their impact on clean energy investments and global CO2 emissions

Meet the conservatives who want to fight climate change — their way

By Jason Plautz  Photo: Ryan Johnson   07/12/21  
In 2013, a 15-year-old named Benji Backer shot onto the conservative media scene, appearing on Megyn Kelly’s Fox News show claiming to have been bullied by his high school teachers in Appleton, Wis., over his…

AOC slams lawmakers controlled by ‘fossil fuel execs’ in response to New York subway floods

By Gino Spocchia   07/09/21  
Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez has called out GOP colleagues in Congress for blocking her Green New Deal amid flooding in New York and New Jersey. Torrential rain brought by storm Elsa on Thursday flooded New York City’s…