In a widely anticipated announcement made at the commencement of the Leaders Summit on Climate, President Biden committed the United States to a 50-52 percent reduction in greenhouse gas (GHG) “pollution” from 2005 levels by 2030.
The announcement also notes that President Biden fulfilled his promise to rejoin the Paris Agreement and set a course for the United States to tackle the climate crisis at home and abroad, reaching net zero emissions economy-wide by no later than 2050. It states:
As part of re-entering the Paris Agreement, he also launched a whole-of-government process, organized through his National Climate Task Force, to establish this new 2030 emissions target – known as the “nationally determined contribution” or “NDC,” a formal submission to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC).
The announcement further states that, to meet the GHG reduction target, the United States must:
- Invest in infrastructure and innovation. America must lead the critical industries that produce and deploy the clean technologies that we can harness today – and the ones that we will improve and invent tomorrow.
- Fuel an economic recovery that creates jobs. We have the opportunity to fuel an equitable recovery, expand supply chains and bolster manufacturing, create millions of good-paying, union jobs, and build a more sustainable, resilient future.
- Breathe clean air and drink clean water and advance environmental justice. We can improve the health and well-being of our families and communities – especially those places too often left out and left behind.
- Make it in America. We can bolster our domestic supply chains and position the U.S. to ship American-made, clean energy products — like EV batteries – around the world.
The announcement states that, in developing the target, the Biden administration:
- Used a whole-of-government approach: The NDC was developed by the National Climate Task Force using a whole-of-government approach, relying on a detailed bottom-up analysis that reviewed technology availability, current costs, and future cost reductions, as well as the role of enabling infrastructure. Standards, incentives, programs, and support for innovation were all weighed in the analysis. The National Climate Task Force is developing this into a national climate strategy to be issued later this year.
- Consulted important and diverse stakeholders: From unions that collectively bargain for millions of Americans who have built our country and work to keep it running to groups representing tens of millions of advocates and young Americans, the Administration listened to Americans across the country. This also included groups representing thousands of scientists; hundreds of governmental leaders like governors, mayors, and tribal leaders; hundreds of businesses; hundreds of schools and institutions of higher education; as well as with many specialized researchers focused on questions of pollution reduction.
- Explored multiple pathways across the economy: The target is grounded in analysis that explored multiple pathways for each economic sector of the economy that produces CO2 and non-CO2 greenhouse gases: electricity, transportation, buildings, industry, and lands.