Clean Energy Bonanza: Biden’s Budget Tries to Undo Trump’s Damage

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      While Trump’s 2020 budget proposal didn’t mention the word “climate” once, Biden’s plan mentions it 146 times. It asks Congress for $14 billion “across nearly every agency” to advance clean energy and zero out U.S. emissions by 2050. The president hopes to direct $10 billion toward clean energy innovation and research, $1.7 billion toward energy efficiency in homes and buildings, and $600 million to electrifying federal vehicles, including at the U.S. Postal Service.

      The budget also aims to bolster agencies that were left in tatters after the Trump administration. The EPA lost nearly 1,000 employees during the Trump years; the Biden administration plans to restore those positions and boost EPA funding by 21 percent. If the budget is enacted, the EPA will receive $11.2 billion in total — more federal funding than ever before.

      “We are very encouraged by the Biden administration’s budget outline,” said Michelle Roos, the executive director of the Environmental Protection Network, a group of EPA alumni formed in reaction to the Trump administration’s environmental rollbacks, in a statement. “The EPA’s budget has declined or remained stagnant for decades, so the 2022 budget proposal is an excellent first step in rebuilding funding and strengthening the agency.”

      The White House is also signaling an end to the “America First” foreign policy that characterized Trump’s approach to climate. The Biden team is asking Congress to approve a $1.2 billion contribution to the Green Climate Fund, a United Nations-backed fund that funnels money to help developing countries adapt to climate change and expand solar and wind power. Even that, however, may not be enough: The U.S. has not contributed to the fund since 2017, and currently owes $2 billion of its initial $3 billion promise. Policy experts also warn that the current U.S. pledge is far too small for what’s needed.

      Jesus: Hey, Dad? God: Yes, Son? Jesus: Western civilization followed me home. Can I keep it? God: Certainly not! And put it down this minute--you don't know where it's been! Tom Robbins in Another Roadside Attraction

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