It’s time for an all-out national mobilization to defeat the climate crisis.

President Biden and Congress must lead the charge to defeat the climate crisis and build a thriving, just and inclusive clean energy future. Join our work to help make it happen.

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It’s time for an all-out national mobilization to defeat the climate crisis.

President Biden and Congress must lead the charge to defeat the climate crisis and build a thriving, just and inclusive clean energy future. Join our work to help make it happen.

The GOP’s Infrastructure Plan Would Guarantee Failure for Biden’s Climate Targets

The Republican framework is totally unacceptable, and contains no investment in climate or environmental justice solutions.

Sen. Capito's plan has $0 for clean electricity, $0 for a clean energy economy, $0 for retrofitting buildings, and $0 for electric vehicles. (© 2013 Gage Skidmore/Flickr CC by SA 2.0)

Last month, President Biden hosted a global summit on climate and set ambitious new targets for the U.S. to reduce its greenhouse gas pollution. His proposal for the American Jobs Plan (AJP) sets us on the path to the clean energy transition we need to meet those targets, but now, Senate Republicans have responded with a plan of their own. The Republican framework is totally unacceptable, and contains no investment in climate or environmental justice solutions. 

The GOP plan is a climate disaster in the making. Not only would it prevent us from meeting our international climate commitments, it would actually move us backwards in the fight against the climate crisis. 

Here’s what you need to know on how passing the GOP’s infrastructure proposal would doom Joe Biden’s climate commitments:

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Biden’s Commitments and How We Get There

From the campaign trail to the White House to the international stage, Biden has promised the American people that his administration will prioritize climate action. At last month’s global climate summit he announced a new Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC), under the Paris Climate Agreement, to reduce U.S. greenhouse gas pollution by at least 50% below 2005 levels by 2030—an ambitious target we can only meet if we take bold action now to supercharge the transition to a 100% clean energy economy. Luckily, Biden’s American Jobs Plan proposal is designed to do exactly that, and here’s how:

Biden’s Proposed Clean Electricity Standard (CES) Would Get Us Nearly Halfway To Meeting The New NDC—On Its Own. The American Jobs plan calls for a CES with a target of 100% clean electricity by 2035, and to get there, the White House has said it supports an interim target of 80% clean electricity by 2030. This one policy can itself achieve nearly half of the necessary pollution reductions to meet our new NDC. Paired with the electrification of buildings, transportation, and some heavy industry, this standard could eliminate upwards of 70-80% of all U.S. carbon pollution by mid century—and its benefits extend far beyond emissions reductions. A federal CES will create millions of good paying jobs, save American families money on their utility bills, and prevent hundreds of thousands of premature deaths caused by air pollution. 

The AJP Includes Critical Investments In The Clean Energy Economy. In addition to a strong CES, the AJP includes $400 billion in new clean energy tax credits to help drive new clean power deployment and reductions in greenhouse gas pollution and other toxic air pollutants. It also outlines plans to direct money to state and local governments that have been leading the fight against climate change through block grants that could be used for clean energy, worker empowerment, and environmental justice.

Building Back Better—With Better Buildings. About one third of America’s greenhouse gas pollution comes from the buildings sector, and the AJP tackles those emissions with investments to build, preserve, and retrofit more than two million homes and commercial buildings. The plan also leverages federal purchasing power to drive innovation and production of clean technologies for commercial and residential buildings, which will make it cheaper and easier to build cleaner and more efficient buildings for years to come.

Eliminating Pollution From The Transportation Sector. To begin tackling carbon pollution from the transportation sector, the AJP would establish a grant program to build a national network of half a million electric vehicle charging stations by 2030. Biden’s proposal also calls on Congress to invest $85 billion to modernize America’s transit systems and help agencies meet rider demand. The Republican proposal would increase pollution from transportation.

"The Capito plan has $0 for clean electricity, $0 for a clean energy economy, $0 for retrofitting buildings, and $0 for electric vehicles."

How Capito’s Plan Falls Short

Zero For Clean Energy And Climate. The infrastructure framework that Senator Shelly Moore Capito is championing is sparse on details and pay-fors, but makes one thing very clear: Republicans remain intractably opposed to the climate action we need. The GOP proposal completely ignores climate and clean energy infrastructure and even cuts funding for key sectors like transit—making it impossible to meet Biden’s climate commitments to the international community and the American public. The Capito plan has $0 for clean electricity, $0 for a clean energy economy, $0 for retrofitting buildings, and $0 for electric vehicles. 

More Highways, More Pollution. The Republican plan allocates more than half of its proposed spending to the Federal Highway Administration—but building more highways without making investments to decarbonize our transportation sector guarantees that if enacted, this plan would increase greenhouse gas emissions and toxic air pollution. At a time when America needs to be dramatically cutting carbon emissions to fulfill its international climate commitments, passing an infrastructure plan that increases pollution would be a disastrous mistake.

Why We Need The AJP

We can’t afford to settle for an insufficient plan that would stall our economic recovery, increase pollution in communities across the country and stop us from fulfilling our international and domestic commitments to fight the climate crisis. To tackle the interlocking and ongoing crises of climate change, environmental racism, and the economic fallout of the COVID-19 pandemic, we need a bold infrastructure plan that launches a just and thriving clean energy economy. We need the American Jobs Plan.

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