Policy Corner: Biden's Climate Cabinet

POET applauds President Biden’s leadership in making climate a top priority with the nominations of Michael Regan for the Administrator of the EPA, Tom Vilsack as Secretary of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Pete Buttigieg as Secretary of Transportation and the appointments of John Kerry as U.S. Climate Envoy and Gina McCarthy as the White House Climate Advisor. Each member of the Biden Climate Team will play a key role in helping the administration make good on its commitment to fight for family farms, end environmental injustice and shift the nation to net-zero emissions. Below are past statements of support for biofuels and climate action from each of the Climate Team members.

Gina McCarthy — White House Climate Advisor

“…the biofuel industry is a great American success story. The U.S. is the world’s largest producer and consumer of biofuels, and we’ve used more renewable fuel than all other countries combined. So EPA’s proposal has to continue to build on that success and to spur ambitious yet achievable growth.”

Pete Buttigieg — Secretary of Transportation

During his 2020 presidential run: “The biofuels industry has enabled us to take great strides in lowering greenhouse gas emissions and weaning ourselves off fossil fuels. We will work with farmers on policies and incentives that reward best practices and drive innovations that are good for U.S. agriculture and good for our climate. Additionally, we will stop the abuse of “small refinery” exemptions, which allows fossil fuel giants to skirt their obligations to blend biofuels. To do this, we will immediately stop giving small refinery waivers to fossil fuel giants and raise the renewable fuel standards.”

Michael Regan — Administrator of the EPA

“…you do have my commitment that we will take a look at the RFS program and we will introduce some transparency into that program. We will let science lead us and we will follow the letter of the law as it was intended. President Biden has not been shy that agriculture will have a seat at the table as we tackle climate, and he’s been specifically focused on biofuels and advanced biofuels.”

Tom Vilsack — Secretary of the U.S. Department of Agriculture

“I think there’s a way in which we can utilize USDA resources and work with Congress to increase those resources to build out the infrastructure to make it easier for higher blends to be available to consumers. Why? Because at the end of the day, consumers benefit: they have less expensive fuel, they have a cleaner-burning fuel, they have a fuel that’s better for the environment. And as we look at the future, I think biofuels continue to play a role in reducing emissions and providing job opportunities in all parts of the country.”

John Kerry — U.S. Special Presidential Envoy for Climate

“The impacts of climate change are already being felt everywhere in the world: the Arctic, the Antarctic and everywhere in between. All you have to do is look at the conditions farmers are dealing with around the world: hotter temperatures, longer droughts, unpredictable rainfall patterns.”




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