President Joe Biden warned Tuesday that America is “blinking code red” on climate change and declared his Build Back Better agenda has the tools the country needs.
Biden, on a multi-day trip that began in Idaho and ended in Colorado, spoke against a backdrop of solar panels at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL). The president explained how his bipartisan infrastructure deal and the build back better agenda will create jobs, tackle climate change and improve America’s infrastructure.
“We need to make the investments that are going to slow our contributions to climate change today. Not tomorrow,” Biden declared. “And here’s the good news. Something that is caused by humans can be solved by humans.”
The president has shifted his focus to climate change following a chaotic exit from Afghanistan at the end of August. Biden saw his approval rating drop significantly amid the debacle, and has since ramped up the messaging on issues closer to home, including the COVID-19 pandemic.
Biden said his goal is for America to reduce greenhouse emissions by between 50-52% by the year 2030. He also noted that he’s hoping half of new cars sold in 2030 are electric vehicles and promised that “every dollar we invest” in improving infrastructure “saves $6 down the road.”
“Every dollar we spend saves $6 down the road because the next time a disaster strikes the flooding is contained,” the president said. “The fire doesn’t spread as widely. The power stays on. And these investments can also save lives, save homes and create good paying jobs for America’s make our country stronger and more resilient.”
Biden promised that the bipartisan infrastructure bill will see roughly 800,000 jobs dedicated to improving America’s infrastructure, citing experts. These jobs will focus on things like “modernizing roads, bridges, water systems, broad band systems, making high speed internet available,” Biden said.
He also issued a warning that the country doesn’t “have the time now” and urged for a quicker pace to combat climate change.
“But folks, we need to pick up the pace,” the president said. “We don’t have the time now. The necessity is there. We don’t have a lot of time, we don’t have much more than 10 years.”