Sign Up for FREE Daily Energy News
CDN NEWS  |   US NEWS  | TIMELY. FOCUSED. REVELANT. FREE
BREAKING NEWS:

Sur-Flo Meters
Hazloc Heaters
Shocker PASS - Headwind Solutions
Sur-Flo Meters
Hazloc Heaters
Shocker PASS - Headwind Solutions

The 2020 Democrats Agree on 7 Ways to Fight Climate Change


By Ryan Teague Beckwith

(Bloomberg) Whoever wins the the Democratic presidential nomination will likely incorporate seven major ideas for fighting climate change that have widespread buy-in among the crowded 2020 field.Although they disagree on environmental policy in other ways, the contenders have broad areas of agreement that point to an emerging Democratic consensus on confronting climate change should they retake the White House. Those ideas will be on display on Wednesday during a nationally televised town hall, with top-tier candidates Joe Biden, Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren.

The Democratic baseline includes restoring Obama-era policies that President Donald Trump has rolled back and re-orienting federal taxes and spending toward renewable energy and away from fossil fuels.

The seven proposals represent the common ground among moderates and liberals on fighting climate change; easier to defend in a general election than some of the bolder — and much more expensive — ideas outlined in the Green New Deal.

Matthew Piotrowski, a senior analyst with Climate Advisers, which consults with nonprofits on climate change policy, said the areas of agreement show how much the Democratic field sees climate change as a top priority right now.

“Even though they disagree on the particulars and how quickly they’d implement their plans, there is agreement that this is a massive problem that will take decades for us to solve,” he said.

The candidates still manage to find some room for disagreement. At the climate change forum, they’ll likely contrast their positions on the Green New Deal, nuclear power, fracking, carbon pricing and ending the filibuster to pass climate change legislation.

Hosted by CNN, the town hall will feature most of the top of the Democratic field, which also includes Kamala Harris, Pete Buttigieg, Cory Booker, Amy Klobuchar, Beto O’Rourke, Julian Castro and Andrew Yang.

Here’s a look at seven areas of agreement.

Rejoin the Paris Climate Accord

The Paris climate agreement is a non-binding resolution signed by 195 countries to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. In 2017, Trump announced that he would withdraw from the accord, effective November 2020, making the U.S. the only country to reject it. The Democratic contenders have universally agreed that the U.S. should rejoin the Paris climate deal.

Who supports it? Biden, Sanders, Warren, Harris, Buttigieg, Booker, Klobuchar, O’Rourke, Castro, Yang

End fossil fuel subsidies

The federal government subsidizes fossil-fuel exploration and production with special breaks in the tax code, which the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office estimated were worth about $4.6 billion in 2016. The Trump administration considered going even further to force electricity buyers to get power from coal plants that were otherwise slated to close. Democratic candidates largely support scrapping the fossil fuel tax breaks.

Who supports it? Biden, Sanders, Warren, Harris, Buttigieg, Booker, Klobuchar, O’Rourke, Castro, Yang

Halt New Drilling on Federal Land

From 2005 to 2014, nearly a quarter of carbon dioxide emissions in the U.S. came from fossil fuels extracted from federal lands, according to a 2018 report from the U.S. Geological Survey. The Trump administration attempted unsuccessfully to overturn an Obama administration moratorium on new coal mining leases on federal land. Most of the Democratic contenders have proposed extending it to new oil and natural gas leases.

Who supports it? Biden, Sanders, Warren, Harris, Buttigieg, Booker, Klobuchar, O’Rourke, Castro, Yang

Reinstate the Clean Power Plan

Unveiled in 2015, the Obama administration’s Clean Power Plan sought to cut carbon pollution from power plants by setting enforceable standards that individual states then have to meet. This year, the Trump administration replaced it with the Affordable Clean Energy rule, which is dramatically weaker. Most Democratic contenders have called for reinstating the Obama standards.

Who supports it? Biden, Sanders, Warren, Harris, Buttigieg, Booker, Klobuchar, O’Rourke, Castro, Yang

Pay Farmers to Reduce Emissions

Farmers and ranchers can reduce their carbon footprints with more environmentally sound techniques, such as changing livestock feed. The U.S. Department of Agriculture encourages this with grants from the Conservation Stewardship Program, which the Trump administration has proposed eliminating. Most of the Democratic contenders have suggested expanding the grants or promoting similar efforts.

Who supports it? Biden, Sanders, Warren, Harris, Buttigieg, Booker, Klobuchar, O’Rourke, Castro, Yang

Set a Goal of Net-Zero Emissions by 2050

Germany, Japan and the U.K. have set a goal of reaching net-zero emissions of greenhouse gases by midcentury in order reduce the worst effects of climate change. The Trump Administration has sought to roll back Obama regulations to reduce greenhouse gases. Several Democratic contenders have proposed setting a far-reaching goal of net-zero emissions by 2050 or earlier.

Who supports it? Biden, Sanders, Warren, Harris, Buttigieg, Booker, Klobuchar, O’Rourke, Castro, Yang

Boost Spending on Clean Energy Research

The U.S. lags behind countries such as Finland, Norway, China and Canada in the amount of government-backed research and development on energy as a percentage of GDP, according to a 2018 report from the American Energy Innovation Council, a coalition of business leaders. The Trump administration has sought to slash spending on clean energy research. Several Democratic contenders want to dramatically expand it.

Who supports it? Biden, Sanders, Warren, Buttigieg, Booker, Harris, Klobuchar, O’Rourke, Castro, Yang



Share This:



More News Articles


New SHOWCASE Directory Companies

 

Gardner Denver
T.A. Cook
STEP Energy Services
Presto GeoSystems