First up, President Biden kept his campaign promise to rejoin the Paris Climate Agreement on his first day in office. With that move, the United States joined the 194 other countries that have signed the agreement. While EPIC applauds President Biden’s decision to rejoin the Paris Climate Agreement, it’s important to remember that this is merely a first step. The Paris Agreement is a pledge to try to reduce a country’s GHG emissions but a pledge without followthrough is worth very little. Biden pledged during his campaign to make a $2 trillion dollar clean energy investment and it’s that kind of action that will actually move us towards a safer future for our planet.
Speaking of which, another early action President Biden has taken on climate change was his federal oil and gas leasing moratorium. On January 27th, President Biden issued an order that mandates a “pause” on new oil and gas leasing on federal lands, both onshore and offshore, “to the extent consistent with applicable law,” while a comprehensive review of oil and gas permitting and leasing is conducted. This action directly led to the cancelation of proposed new offshore oil drilling in Alaska which would have had long lasting environmental consequences. Biden’s moratorium on federal oil and gas leasing is welcome but is by no means a panacea. All pre-existing leases on federal lands will still continue to produce fossil fuels and federal lands only account for a fraction of our nation’s oil and gas production. Two other executive actions taken by President Biden, the