Biden vows U.S. will meet ambitious emissions targets, pledges billions to fight climate change

Speaking at a U.N. climate conference, the president touted his administration's efforts on climate issues, including passage of the Inflation Reduction Act.
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Joe Biden at a White House post-midterm press conference, Nov. 9, 2022
Joe Biden at a White House post-midterm press conference, Nov. 9, 2022
(MANDEL NGAN/Getty)

President Biden on Friday said his administration has the country on track to meet aggressive targets to cut greenhouse gas emissions by the end of the decade, promising to make further investments to combat climate change.

"The sum total of the actions my administration is taking puts the United States on track to achieve our Paris Agreement goal of reducing emissions 50%-52% below 2005 levels by 2030," Biden said at a United Nations climate conference known as COP27 in Egypt. "The United States will meet our emissions targets by 2030."

Biden also pledged to work with Congress to quadruple "U.S. support to climate finance" in order to provide over $11 billion annually by 2024 to help developing countries respond to climate change.

That may prove to be an uphill battle, however, especially if Republicans take control of the House when the midterm election results are finalized.

During his in-person speech, Biden also announced new restrictions on emissions of methane, a potent greenhouse gas, along with a set of ambitious initiatives that require investing billions of dollars both domestically and abroad. He also called on other nations to follow his lead.

"Countries that are in a position to help should be supporting developing countries so they can make decisive climate decisions, facilitating their energy transitions, building a path to prosperity compatible with our climate imperative," said Biden, who described climate change as an existential threat "to the very life of the planet."

Biden devoted time during his remarks to touting his domestic record on climate issues, especially his efforts to help pass the Democrat-backed Inflation Reduction act, which includes about $370 billion to address climate change.

"Over the past two years, the United States has delivered unprecedented progress at home," he said.

Biden's comments came after he received backlash in the U.S. last week for saying "we're going to be shutting these [coal] plants down all across America and having wind and solar."