Introduction

The Biden Administration has promised to “take swift action to address the climate emergency” and set ambitious emissions goals for the U.S. economy. Such action will require Congress to approve sweeping new emissions targets and grants of authority to the executive branch. In the absence of such action, federal agencies will need to push the limits of their existing regulatory authorities to try to meet the president’s goals. AAF’s series, Addressing the Climate Challenge, will analyze the major legislative and regulatory proposals aimed at addressing climate change in terms of their effectiveness at reducing emissions and their impact on the economy.

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Biden's Climate Goals

Infographic

Policy Proposed in the NDC by Sector

The Biden Administration submitted its Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC) to the United Nations in April to assert how the United States would reduce its greenhouse gas emissions to comply with the Paris Agreement.

Regulation

Insight

Examining the NDC: Electricity Generation

Executive Summary The United States’ recent Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC) submission to the United Nations promises to achieve greenhouse gas reductions of 50-52 percent from 2005 levels by 2030 and establishes a goal of “100 percent carbon pollution-free electricity by…

Insight

Examining the NDC: Methane from Oil and Natural Gas

Executive Summary The United States’ plan to reduce greenhouse gas emissions 50-52 percent from 2005 levels by 2030, introduced as part of rejoining the Paris Agreement on climate change, relies in part on new methane-emission regulations on the oil and…

Insight

Examining the NDC: Transportation Emissions

Executive Summary Greenhouse gases from transportation sources represent the largest source of emissions by sector in the United States, and reducing these emissions is necessary for the Biden Administration to reach its goal stated in the Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC).…

Insight

Assessing the Climate Impacts of the EPA’s Proposed Vehicle Emissions Rule

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY The Environmental Protection Agency’s recent proposed rule on greenhouse gas emissions from light-duty vehicles is the first of several expected rulemakings targeting the transportation sector in an effort to help the United States meet its goal of reducing…

Legislation

Insight

The CLEAN Future Act’s Clean Electricity Standard

Executive Summary House Energy and Commerce Committee Democrats introduced the Climate Leadership and Environmental Action for our Nation’s (CLEAN) Future Act in an effort to achieve economy-wide net zero emissions by 2050. To address power-sector emissions, the bill relies on…

Research

The Cost of Clean Generation

Executive Summary The Biden Administration’s Nationally Determined Contribution submission to the United Nations climate agreement calls for all carbon emissions to be removed from electricity generation by 2035. Democratic leadership of the House Energy and Commerce Committee has introduced the…

Research

The Cost of Upgrading Electricity Transmission

Executive Summary The Biden Administration’s goal for the United States to generate 100 percent carbon pollution-free electricity by 2035 will require significant modifications to the transmission system. Congressional Democrats’ Climate Leadership and Environmental Action for our Nation’s (CLEAN) Future Act…

Research

The Cost of Upgrading Electric Distribution

Executive Summary The Biden Administration committed the United States to generating carbon pollution-free electricity by 2035 in its submission under the Paris Climate Agreement—a commitment that will require modifying electrical distribution systems. Distribution systems deliver electricity to consumers, and these…

Experts