Has 2020 – which seemed irredeemable – just done a 180? We’ll be back in the Paris agreement, Biden’s got a zero-emissions plan, East Asia’s making big moves, and there might even be a vaccine for Covid-19.
President-Elect Joe Biden has already named his environment transition team. And he discussed climate change with four European heads of state this Tuesday.
He also has a “Build Back Better” one-pager that looks a lot like the green recovery plans in Europe we’ve been discussing for months.
We’re going to look at specific things a Biden administration can do in each identified category to get to net-zero emissions.
Then, 2020 is turning into the year of net-zero. Japan and South Korea have now promised to zero out carbon emissions by 2050. That preserves the possibility of keeping warming at or below 1.5º C.
This fall, China also issued its first-ever net-zero date. That means most of East Asia has now committed to eliminating all new carbon emissions by a certain date.
President Moon Jae-in of South Korea actually ran and won on a platform of a Green New Deal for Korea. He’s talking about a ‘just transition’ away from dirty energy. And Japan says it will rethink its reliance on coal.
These are big stories on their own. Bigger in the context of America’s re-engagement with the world as we head toward climate negotiations in 2021.
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