Joe Biden may consider declaring a climate emergency this week by issuing an executive order.
Biden is slated to travel to Somerset, Massachusetts on Wednesday to address “tackling the climate crisis and seizing the opportunity of a clean energy future to create jobs and lower costs for families,” the White House announced on Tuesday.
He may declare a “national climate emergency as soon as this week,” White House officials reportedly told the Washington Post:
“The president made clear that if the Senate doesn’t act to tackle the climate crisis and strengthen our domestic clean energy industry, he will,” a White House official, who requested anonymity to describe the deliberations, said in a statement late Monday. “We are considering all options and no decision has been made.”
Jared Bernstein, a top White House economic adviser, emphasized to reporters at a news briefing earlier in the day that Biden would “aggressively fight to attack climate change.”
“I think realistically there is a lot he can do and there is a lot he will do,” Bernstein said.
Biden’s has plans to issue the emergency declaration, the Associated Press confirms, but will likely make the move following the Massachusetts trip.
According to a report published in February by the Center for Biological Diversity, declaring an emergency would authorize the Biden administration to execute “Key Climate Emergency Executive Actions,” including the capacity to limit all fossil fuel imports and exports, suspend the offshore drilling leases for 11 million acres of federal waters and reinstate a crude oil export ban that Congress voted to repeal in 2015.
The Center for Biological Diversity, a national, nonprofit organization dedicated to the protection of endangered species and wild places, is urging Biden to to deploy an emergency declaration to maximum effect for a “viable future.”
“A historic climate emergency is exactly what we need from Biden to match the scale and urgency of this crisis,” warns author of the report Jean Su. “With the world on fire from California to Croatia, and emergency declaration will show Biden’s ready to fight bare-knuckle for viable future. By unlocking crucial climate powers, Biden can put Manchin’s gaslighting behind us and get busy getting us off fossil fuels and building the renewable-energy powerhouse we desperately need.”
The aggressive move to mitigate the “climate crisis” comes a day after Sen. Joe Manchin killed chances of a climate bill in Congress. The West Virginia Democrat refused to support his party’s efforts to pass an economic package that would allocated billions of dollars to address global warming.