Is Biden’s Environmental Plan Feasible?

Throughout the election process, the people of the United States of America have been able to acquaint themselves with President-Elect Biden and his ambitious plans regarding climate change. Joseph R. Biden Jr.’s $2 trillion plan to tackle global warming is the most enterprising climate policy proposed by a President-Elect in recent times. Joe Biden and his allies are mustering to pass climate change legislation piece by piece, knowing well that the candidate’s $2 trillion plan would be a tough sell. At the forefront of Biden’s presidential campaign is dealing with the effects of climate change in the United States. Biden wants to create a robust economic infrastructure while still dealing with global warming’s negative impact. Therefore, now that Biden has been elected president, the country is anxiously waiting to see what will be carried out from his $2 trillion plan. Many people question how Biden will manage to sustain a thriving economy when he has planned to put so much forward for the environment. So the question is, is Biden’s environmental plan feasible?

President-Elect Biden has put it out there that facing this problem is one of his top priorities; that’s why he outlines a bold plan – a Clean Energy Revolution. On the first day of Biden’s Administration, according to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, there will only be nine years left to stop the worst consequences of climate change. Biden claims that he will act on climate change immediately and ambitiously because there’s no time to waste. One of the first things Biden wants to do when he is in office is to invest majorly in a clean source of energy and innovation. Over ten years, he will invest $400 Billion in renewable energy and technology, which would allow us to analyze the effects of climate change today. Biden has promised to make the US a carbon-free country by 2035 and have net-zero emissions by 2050. Biden plans to do this by spending a fair amount on public transportation, investing in cleaner vehicles, and giving citizens financial boundaries regarding what to spend their money on.

Furthermore, Biden wants to move towards a less carbon-dependent economy, enabling more jobs to help reshape the country’s energy. In a meeting, Mr. Biden said, “There will be a big push on electric vehicles, a big push on efficient buildings, both residential and offices, a big push on creating a new kind of civilian conservation corps and doing a lot of nature-based solutions on climate change.” Biden has also made it very clear that he will not tolerate fracking on federal land. Fracking is when chemicals are stuffed into rocks to let out gas and oils stuck underneath the ground. But, because most fracking occurs on private land, this act will not have a major effect. Over the years, Trump made it clear he wanted to be released from the Paris Climate Agreement; in November the US was officially cleared from the Paris Climate accord. This was a significant loss for climate enthusiasts and scientists, but now that Joe Biden is in power, he has promised to integrate the US in the Paris Accord as soon as he steps in office. Although it will take about a month to rejoin officially, the critical moment will come in the run-up to the November 2021 Conference of Parties (COP) scheduled to take place in Glasgow, Scotland. After all these promises, expectations for President-Elect Biden regarding climate change are very high.

Opposers of Biden are vehemently against this massive two-trillion dollar climate plan. Mr. Trump’s allies described the plan as a costly threat to jobs in the energy sector and significantly questioned the Clean Energy Revolution. These opposers are worried that Biden will raise taxes massively and tax them for energy reform to fulfill this promise. Like the opposers, Daniel Zuchaer, a tenth-grade high school student, says, “From what I know of Joe Biden, he’s a big supporter of winning the climate war with economic reforms. He’s proven his loyalty to global change by passing the first climate change legislation in 1986 and signing the Paris climate act in 2015. However, today he promises to allocate funds towards energy cleansing that will save families thousands of dollars every year. But at what cost? The idea of raising people’s taxes to support these plans?” Daniel later states, “these investments are a win-win-win for this country. If you ask me, it’s more lose-lose-win. If this goes through, Biden will be ‘taxing a dead horse.’ Our economy is in a crisis, and he’s already making it worse.” Daniel makes a point. He then goes on and says, “What Biden wants to do is beneficial for the future of America, but what future will we have if we tax an already ill economy.” However, the founder of the Scheck Hillel environmental club, Asher, thinks otherwise, “The Climate Crisis is real, and we need to act fast; though $2 trillion may sound like a significant amount of money, $2 trillion is necessary and essential because we only have ten years left to tackle this humanitarian crisis. Not to mention, we are way behind track, and we need to start waking up at this moment.” Similarly, young climate activists have enjoyed Biden’s win and have implied that this was the step in the right direction. Zero Hour, a climate justice movement, has urged people to join them in ensuring that the President-elect backs the Green New Deal. Activists believe that because they delivered to him, it is time that he provides to them. Democrat Senator Chuck Schumert of New York said, “There are three things we have to do — climate, economic equality, and democracy,” he later continued and said, “All three are vital, and climate is not going to be the caboose.”

All in all, Biden’s environmental plan has caused a nationwide controversy that has sparked many to speak up. President-Elect Biden said that addressing climate change was “the number one issue facing humanity. And it’s the number one issue for me.” Biden believes his plan to address this critical issue matches the immense urgency of the moment. While some are putting all their trust in Mr. Biden’s agenda, others worry whether energy taxes will make everyday life very different from what it is today. In the coming years, we will see whether this plan is feasible or unrealistic. But, climate change is impacting our world today, not only environmentally but also economically, and all of us will need to accept that. 

Sources:

  1. https://www.nytimes.com/2020/10/25/climate/biden-climate-change.html
  2. https://www.washingtonpost.com/climate-environment/2020/11/11/biden-climate-change/
  3. https://www.bbc.com/news/science-environment-54858638
  4. https://www.npr.org/2020/10/25/927564427/breaking-down-joe-bidens-plan-to-make-the-u-s-carbon-neutral



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