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The US President Plan B for climate crisis will be challenging to pull off!

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The current President of the US and Democrats in Congress are trying to find other ways to cut the US emission. Both stand to learn a lot from the Obama era as they try to create Plan B for an escalating climate crisis. Clean Electricity Payment Program is one of the most impactful climate policies that Congress has ever considered.

Top Democrats have promised to find out a domestic climate deal before the current President speaks at a pivotal UN climate conference in Glasgow. If Congress fails to develop key climate policies as federal laws, then Plan B would include executive orders and significant regulations from the Environmental Protection Agency.

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The challenge is that executive actions aren’t the best substitute for federal laws and may last only as long as the current President’s presidency is there. Technological realities lag in the EPA regulation. A similar bind in Congress under President Barack Obama made his climate actions weaker.

Obama’s strategy for handling climate change needed Congress to pass a bipartisan bill. This would have put a lid on climate pollution and created a market for trading. Obama appointees admitted by summer 2010, they didn’t have the votes in the Senate, and the bill died that summer. Obama was aware that votes would not be there right now, but they will be there in the coming months. He never found them.

To ensure pollution cuts the Obama administration didn’t find other ways. The subsequent years were spent by climate activities accusing Obama of climate science. It wasn’t until 2013; he commented on climate change. He said, “If Congress won’t act soon … I will … with executive actions.”The Biden climate strategy in 2021 will almost end up the same as the course of the Obama administration. 

Inaction by Congress almost for a decade has now cost the world precious time to avoid the most extreme consequences of climate change. It seems very difficult to achieve the global goal of limiting warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius by looking at the current global emissions. Every fraction of a degree of global warming can claim livelihoods and lives. 

The progress can be seen in the US but at a slow rate. Between 2005-2020 domestic climate pollution has fallen by less than 22%. The current President has announced a new target: cutting US climate pollution by at least 50% by 2030. According to the climate expert, the best way to ensure that the US reaches this target would be through ambitious congressional action. Federal laws could lead to a transition both in the electricity sector and gas-guzzling cars by replacing fossil fuel in the electricity sector and cars with electric vehicles. 

As a part of the Build Back Better Act, one prong still depends on Congress passing historic clean energy funding. The 2nd depends on ambitious regulations prepared by the White House of natural gas production, transportation, electricity. The 3rd one relies on states, especially the 25 that are already committed to climate action. They need to ramp up energy efficiency, clean energy, fuel standards to match the most ambitious regions in the nation. This Plan B will be challenging to pull off and is less ambitious than climate activists had hoped for.

 

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