Presidential candidate Joe Biden has made environmental recommendations that most analysts find more ambitious than his stance on containing man-made climate change at the start of his campaign.
The climate goals – including the call to eliminate carbon emissions from power plants by 2035 and modernize the power grid to achieve this – were part of the alleged democratic candidate's collaboration with former candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders and his more advanced platform.
Biden is now responding to the recommendations made by the Biden-Sanders Unity Task Force that were submitted by six policy areas that cover climate change, healthcare, criminal justice, education, and more. The recommendations are presented to the Party Committee of the Democratic National Committee as a “starting point” for their review.
Former Secretary of State John Kerry and MEP Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, New York Democrat and co-author of a Green New Deal that had not progressed in a shared congress, were co-chairs of the climate action force, a key campaign initiative for younger voters to win.
Last month, spokeswoman Nancy Pelosi and Democrats from the House's Special Committee on Climate published their plan to urge Congress to set a national zero-emissions target by at least 2050 and aggressively switch to fossil fuel-based renewables. It was a proposal that frustrated most Republicans on the selection committee who believed that collaborative work was progressing and who advocated carbon capture, nuclear and other climate change initiatives.
Here are some of the key aspects of the proposal.
Removal of carbon pollution from power plants by 2035. Carbon emissions from the U.S. energy sector declined 8% last year despite economic growth as utilities increasingly lowered coal for cheaper natural gas and renewable energy. However, Biden-Sanders' plan includes further steps to further reduce this number. They demand the installation of 500 million solar modules, including eight million solar roofs and municipal solar systems, as well as 60,000 wind turbines manufactured in America.
Greener buildings. The task sets a national goal to achieve zero greenhouse gas emissions for all new buildings by 2030 in order to create a 100 percent clean construction sector. Within five years, tens of billions of dollars of private sector investment will be funded to retrofit four million buildings. This also includes energy-saving upgrades for up to two million low-income households as well as affordable and public housing units within five years.
Read:Here's why utility companies' CO2 emissions can go down even in a high-performing economy
Among the other goals:
Back to California's Clean Air Act to set its own emissions standards for cars and trucks.
Read:California approves unique rules that force automakers to sell more electric trucks
Supporting the private introduction of affordable, environmentally friendly and emission-free vehicles with the goal of installing at least 500,000 public charging stations nationwide.
Invest in a cleaner, fair and globally competitive manufacturing sector.
Work with farmers to make the American agricultural sector the first in the world to achieve net zero emissions.
Supporting the advancement of technologies that assist industry in decarbonization, including carbon capture and advanced nuclear areas – areas often identified in Republican climate change initiatives.
Recommit the US to the Paris voluntary climate deal and create and strengthen other international commitments on climate and pollution.
President Trump pulled the United States out of the Paris Climate Pact, in which 200 countries volunteered to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and prevent global temperatures from rising by more than 2 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels. Trump has linked his withdrawal to allegations of developing country non-compliance.