President Joe Biden officially began the process of reentering the Paris Agreement Wednesday. America’s reentry into the global climate framework, an important first step toward undoing the damage done to the country’s global reputation on climate issues, will require additional measures to meet its emissions reductions targets. The U.S. is only about halfway toward meeting its targeted 28% emissions cut from 2005 levels by 2025, but experts are confident that ambitious measures undertaken by the Biden administration could cut greenhouse gas pollution by as much as 50% by 2030.
Biden’s action to re-enter the Paris Agreement was criticized by Republicans, including Ted Cruz who claimed doing so prioritized Parisians over Yinzers despite the Pittsburgh mayor’s support for the Paris Agreement and the fact that Cruz voted to disenfranchise the entire commonwealth of Pennsylvania two weeks ago.
International leaders praised the U.S. reentry. “You will be welcomed back to [the] Paris Agreement, USA!” Christiana Figueres, former Executive Secretary of the U.N. Framework Convention on Climate Change, wrote on Twitter. “Even as the White House went dark, US citizens, public & corporate leaders kept the light.” The U.S. will fully reenter the agreement after 30 days. (Paris reentry: New York Times $, The Guardian, Grist, Politico Pro $, Bloomberg $, CNBC; GOP reaction: WTAE-4, Reuters, HuffPost; International response: Thomson Reuters Foundation, Bloomberg $, Reuters)