Inside the Greenhouse is a monthly newsletter about FCNL’s environmental work, ways to engage members of Congress, and stories that impact our work.
President Biden Acts on Climate Change
True to his campaign promise, President Joe Biden issued an executive order to rejoin the Paris Climate Agreement soon after he was sworn in on Jan. 20, with re-entry taking effect on Feb. 19.
FCNL joined 20 faith organizations in applauding the United States’ reentry and calling for global leadership, transformative domestic action, and international climate funding.
In the coming months, Biden will have to submit an updated plan to help fulfill the goals of the agreement; an ambitious plan will signal to the world that the United States is committed to strong climate action. Read more in FCNL’s statement on Biden’s first day actions.
On Jan. 20, President Biden also revoked the March 2019 permit for the Keystone XL pipeline and took the first steps towards restoring Bears Ears and Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monuments. Further, President Biden directed federal agencies to reinstate the “social cost” of carbon, nitrous oxide, and methane. This measure is essential to accurately determine the benefits of reducing greenhouse gas emissions.
President Biden reiterated his commitment to addressing climate change through another series of executive orders on Jan. 27, including establishing the first White House Environmental Justice Interagency Council. As a result of these orders, the Department of the Interior will pause all new oil and gas leases on public lands, review all existing fossil fuel leasing and permitting practices, and identify steps to double renewable energy production from offshore wind by 2030.
The Biden administration also introduced their 30x30 goal of conserving at least 30 percent of our lands and oceans by 2030.
In 2021, there are 14 senators in the Climate Solutions Caucus
News and Updates
Majority of Voters Support Action on Climate Change
According to a new survey, a majority of registered voters, including 23% of Republicans, think that addressing global warming should be a high or very high priority for the president and Congress. There was also strong bipartisan support for developing sources of clean energy, renewable energy research, stronger vehicle fuel efficiency standards, and just transition programs for unemployed coal workers.
Listen to Amanda Gorman’s “Earthrise” Poem
If you’re looking to hear more from poet Amanda Gorman after her inspiring delivery of “The Hill We Climb,” at President Biden’s inauguration, listen to her 2018 poem “Earthrise” – a moving call to action on the climate crisis.
U.S. Chamber of Commerce Open to Carbon Pricing
On Jan. 19, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce announced that it was open to a carbon tax to “accelerate greenhouse gas emissions reductions across the U.S. economy.” The chamber joins a growing and diverse array of organizations and networks who have signaled their willingness to consider market-based solutions to address climate change.
New Federal Focus on Disaster Resiliency and Adaptation
A new federal initiative, Building Resilient Infrastructure and Communities (BRIC), focuses on proactively addressing natural disasters related to climate change. If approved by the White House budget office, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) would shift $10 billion of their overall spending to resiliency projects and preventative infrastructure.
Constituent Spotlight: New York Yearly Meeting
On Jan. 28, I spoke with 28 Friends from New York Yearly Meeting about the opportunities and challenges for climate advocacy in the 117th Congress. Grounding my remarks in our change strategy and goals, I shared how Friends across the country can be powerful advocates for our communities and planet.