Biden pledges to cut emissions in half by 2030
Last week, President Biden told leaders of other countries that the United States would cut its greenhouse gas emissions in half by 2030, as the other leaders also made pledges at a virtual summit Biden organized.
Key biofuels groups endorsed the target and said they should be part of the solution.
Growth Energy CEO Emily Skor said, “Growth Energy applauds President Biden for setting an ambitious new decarbonization target for the United States as part of its commitment to the Paris Agreement.”
“We look forward to working with the Biden-Harris Administration to ensure low-carbon biofuels, like ethanol, are an integral part of efforts to address climate change, reduce transportation sector emissions, improve air quality, and create jobs in rural America.
“Plant-based biofuels, like ethanol, have long been a key part of the nation’s strategy to reduce carbon emissions. Since 2007, ethanol has been responsible for cumulative carbon dioxide savings of 600 million metric tons in the U.S., or the equivalent of removing 130 million cars from the road, roughly half of our nation’s fleet.
“In addition, the biofuels industry employs more than 360,000 hard-working Americans across the country and especially in rural America. As the U.S. takes steps to address the growing climate crisis, meet our international climate goals, improve public health outcomes, and grow the clean energy economy, biofuels are an essential part of the solution.”
Brooke Coleman, executive director of the Advanced Biofuels Business Council, said, “The administration’s commitment reflects the ambition we need to restore U.S. leadership in the battle against climate change. Now, it’s up to the EPA and others to match that commitment with specific, concrete actions to fast-track our transition to a net-zero future.”
“The data shows we can’t reach those goals without a major influx of renewable fuels, both in terms [of] traditional low-carbon biofuels, as well as the cellulosic and advanced sources that have spent years waiting in line for approval at the EPA.
“Rural America is ready to get behind a 50-state strategy that can stand up to political pressure and create opportunities for a diverse array of green jobs. The White House has powerful and well-established tools under the Renewable Fuel Standard to jump-start that progress without any new action by Congress. The sooner we make it happen, the sooner America can lead on the world stage.”
Geoff Cooper, president and CEO of the Renewable Fuels Association, said, “We are pleased to see the inclusion of renewable fuels in President Biden’s plan for reducing U.S. greenhouse gas emissions, and we agree that efforts to deploy larger volumes of ‘very low carbon’ renewable fuels should be a key component of our nation’s commitment to reduce emissions from the transportation sector under the Paris Agreement.”
“However, renewable fuels can do far more than decarbonize aviation and other off-road markets. Just since 2008, nearly 1 billion metric tons of GHG emissions have been prevented from entering the atmosphere due to the increased use of renewable fuels to meet Renewable Fuel Standard obligations.
“In addition, recent research by scientists affiliated with Harvard, Tufts, and MIT shows that today’s average corn ethanol is reducing GHG emissions by almost 50% compared to gasoline. And with the adoption of carbon capture and sequestration, carbon-efficient feedstock production practices, and other new technologies, corn ethanol can be a ‘net-zero,’ carbon-neutral fuel by the end of the decade.
“As recognized by President Biden, achieving a 50% GHG reduction economy-wide by 2030 will take a portfolio approach that capitalizes on a broad and diverse array of low-carbon technologies, and that should include ethanol and other biofuels.
“We look forward to receiving more details and information regarding the role renewable fuels are expected to play in the Biden administration’s nationally determined contribution that will be submitted to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change.”
Bayer Crop Science North America said it ”applauds the Biden administration for returning the United States to a leadership position by rejoining the Paris Climate Accord and for hosting the leaders’ Summit on Climate in advance of COP26. Today’s release of the Nationally Determined Contribution is a significant step in limiting global temperature rise below 1.5C.”
“We look forward to working with the Biden administration, members of Congress and our customers to tackle the climate crisis and to ensure that American agriculture is part of the solution.” said Jacqueline Applegate, president of Bayer Crop Science North America. “Bayer is committed to being part of the solution to climate change by mitigating our own contributions, helping farmers be more resilient to climate change and by enabling farmers to reduce their own carbon footprint.”
Senate Agriculture Appropriations Subcommittee ranking member John Hoeven, R-N.D., said,
“There are real, bipartisan priorities that we are pursuing to create good-paying jobs and ensure our nation remains energy independent while improving environmental stewardship.”
“However, we won’t get there through unworkable mandates, tax increases and burdensome federal regulations that impose greater costs on energy producers and consumers.
“Further, it does not make sense for Americans alone to bear this burden, when we cannot expect the same from countries like China, Russia and India. We should instead continue to invest in new innovative technologies like carbon capture, utilization and storage, which will enable us to continue relying on all of our abundant energy resources while also reducing emissions, both in the U.S. and abroad as other nations adopt the technology we have pioneered.”
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