Donald Trump has taken a new approach to climate change, telling the American people they must take action before the world goes extinct, according to a senior advisor.
Donald Trump speaks to reporters at the White House in Washington, DC, November 21, 2020.
President Trump on Wednesday made his biggest climate change promise yet, saying that the world must stop burning fossil fuels.
In a speech to a joint session of Congress, Mr Trump said the United States must make a strong commitment to cutting carbon emissions from power plants, cars and factories before the planet goes extinct.
“This is our opportunity to make a real difference,” Mr Trump told the joint session.
“I want to be the first one in history to go to the moon.”
Mr Trump will also sign an executive order calling for a 15 per cent cut in the US’s carbon footprint by 2030.
The US already has the world’s highest CO2 emissions per person, but Mr Trump has promised to dramatically reduce those levels.
Mr Trump’s pledge came amid widespread reports that he was considering pulling the US out of the Paris climate deal, an agreement reached by more than 190 countries in 2015 to limit global warming to well below 2C.
“We’re going to start the process right away, and I think we’ll make an announcement within the next 24 hours,” Mr Trumps spokesman Sean Spicer told reporters at a briefing on Wednesday.
“He is not making a decision at this time.”
The Paris deal is a landmark achievement in the fight against climate change.
It aims to limit greenhouse gas emissions to the rise in temperature that scientists believe will lead to the most devastating consequences of climate change such as mass extinctions and devastating storms.
The United States was one of only a handful of countries that did not ratify the agreement at the UN climate talks in December.
“There is no doubt that the President is very confident in the Paris deal,” Mr Spicer said.
Mr Spicer later clarified that he did not mean to imply that Mr Trump had made up his mind on whether to withdraw from the deal.
The Paris accord was designed to reduce the annual global temperature rise to 1.5C above pre-industrial levels.
Under the agreement, nations set a target of limiting their emissions to 20 per cent below 2005 levels by 2050, and a goal of keeping them below 2.5 per cent by 2100.
But the deal requires countries to make substantial reductions in emissions before they can meet those targets.
Countries also have to make major investments in renewable energy, which can be hard to achieve.
“The Paris deal has already created the most ambitious and ambitious target for carbon reduction in the world, but it was signed by only a small number of countries and they did so with a strong emphasis on emissions reductions,” said Daniel Barenboim, an associate professor of climate science at the University of Massachusetts in Boston.
“It’s not that there is not room to do even more, but there is room to be more ambitious.”
‘Significant gains’ in US climate policy, experts say In a joint statement on Wednesday, the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) hailed the president’s plan.
“As a nation, we have made substantial gains in the last decade in addressing the climate crisis,” the EPA and NOAA said in a joint press release.
The announcement comes amid growing pressure on the president to cut the US emissions. “
Actions like these are not only the right thing to do, they are the right way to make progress towards our climate goals.”
The announcement comes amid growing pressure on the president to cut the US emissions.
The Trump administration is also under fire for its failure to implement the US President’s Climate Action Plan, which calls for reducing carbon emissions to 28 per cent of 2005 levels, the lowest level since the industrial revolution.
In recent months, Mr Triffs decision to sign an Executive Order has been seen as a test of the president.
Mr Triffers own energy company, Liberty Energy, has been among the biggest investors in coal-fired power plants in the United Kingdom.
The announcement on Wednesday comes amid concerns that the Trump administration will fail to meet its climate pledge, and could even be forced to pay billions of dollars in penalties.
The EPA and the US Department of Justice (DOJ) are investigating whether the president broke the law by refusing to disclose his plans to reduce emissions.