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U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken on Monday said the U.S. is falling behind China, the largest producer and exporter of solar panels, wind turbines, batteries and electric vehicles.
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Speaking from Annapolis, overlooking Chesapeake Bay, Blinken said, “If we don’t catch up, America will miss the chance to shape the world’s climate future in a way that reflects our interests and values, and we’ll lose out on countless jobs for the American people.”
Blinken was speaking as the Biden administration is preparing to host a virtual global leader climate summit Thursday and Friday of this week.
President Joe Biden is expected to present a nonbinding but symbolic goal for reducing greenhouse gas emissions that will affect climate change efforts in the U.S. and the world.
Biden’s emissions target, expected at a virtual climate summit on Thursday, will signal how aggressively he wants to move on climate change.
Scientists, environmental groups and even business leaders are calling on Biden to set a target that would cut U.S. greenhouse gas emissions by at least 50 percent below 2005 levels by 2030.
The 50 percent target, which most experts consider a likely outcome of intense deliberations underway at the White House, would nearly double the nation’s previous commitment and require dramatic changes in the power and transportation sectors, including significant increases in renewable energy such as wind and solar power and steep cuts in emissions from fossil fuels such as coal and oil.
John Kerry, Biden’s climate envoy, has been pressing global leaders, including his counterpart in China, for commitments and alliances on climate efforts in advance of the summit.
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