The Progressive


A project of Common Dreams

For Immediate Release
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Sunrise Outlines President Biden's Climate Emergency Powers

In response to President Biden’s statement that he has practically declared a climate emergency, Sunrise Movement made clear what declaring a climate emergency would look like and achieve.

Declaring a climate emergency under the National Emergencies Act would enable the President to utilize the full force of his executive powers to usher in a wartime mobilization to confront the climate crisis, including:

  • Moving federal dollars towards building cleaner energy systems,
  • Marshaling private companies to manufacture the technologies we need to reduce emissions,
  • Redirecting funding to resilient infrastructure, affordable housing, good and efficient transit,
  • Responding with the full force of the federal government to climate disasters as they occur,
  • Halting crude oil exports, stopping oil and gas drilling, and transitioning our economy off of fossil fuels,
  • Stopping the issue of permits for any new fossil fuel infrastructure, including pipelines, petrochemical plants, and export terminals,
  • Ending the practice of leasing public lands and waters for fossil fuel production,
  • And over 100 other statutory powers.

The President’s use of the Stafford Act to respond to the COVID-19 crisis and the Defense Production Act (DPA) to ensure we have the supply chain to expedite the transition to renewable energy are both encouraging, and demonstrate he knows that he has additional executive powers at his disposal.

This move would not only be critical to ensuring the Administration hits their climate goals, but is legal and constitutional, as seen in former President Trump’s use of these powers to construct a border wall.

Sunrise Movement is a movement to stop climate change and create millions of good jobs in the process.