WASHINGTON (NEXSTAR) — President Joe Biden celebrated Earth Day on Thursday by introducing his new climate goal that he says will slow climate change and grow jobs.
“The United States isn’t waiting. We are resolving to take action,” Biden said during a virtual climate summit at the White House.
The president said the United States will work to cut greenhouse gas emissions in half by 2030. That’s well above the pledge made by former President Barack Obama.
President Biden said cutting greenhouse gases will slow climate change and grow the economy.
“Small businesses, large businesses, large corporations – American workers in every field,” Biden said.
The president invited 40 world leaders to the virtual climate conference at the White House coinciding with Earth Day.
The U.S. is returning to the effort of battling climate change after a four-year absence under former President Donald Trump.
“We have to step up,” President Biden said.
“I’m delighted to see that the United States is back,” German Chancellor Angela Merkel said during the summit.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson of the United Kingdom added that it was, “returning the United States to the front rank against climate change.”
While international leaders welcomed the U.S. back to the table, Sen. Lindsey Graham is not as enthusiastic.
“I’ll be glad to find common ground where I can,” the South Carolina Republican said Thursday.
But he isn’t on board with Congressional Democrats and their Green New Deal which goes even further than the president’s plan.
Meanwhile, Sen. Tim Kaine, D-Va., said he supports the president’s ambitious goal.
“It’s not gonna be easy to get there but you never get there if you don’t set a goal,” Kaine said.
The international leaders will meet again in November at the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Scotland.