President Biden spoke of the potential economic and standard of living benefits that could come as a result of addressing climate change, while saying that the world is at an "inflection point" in dealing with the situation.
The president delivered brief remarks at an economic forum on energy and climate in which he called on the world to take dramatic action.
"I wanted to show that we’re at an inflection point, and there’s a real consensus, a real consensus that while the climate crisis poses an existential threat, there is a silver lining," Biden said. "The climate crisis also presents real and incredible economic opportunities to create jobs and lift the standard of living for people around the world."
Biden said he's planning "historic investment and to modernize our climate-resilient infrastructure to build a clean-energy future that creates millions of jobs and ushers in new industries of the future."
Citing hurricanes, flooding, fires in regions across the globe, including temperatures of 118 degrees in the Arctic Circle, Biden warned against getting "too close to a point of no return." To that end, he encouraged other countries to bring their "highest possible ambitions" to November's UN Climate Change Conference – also known as COP26 – in Glasgow, Scotland.
"Those that have not yet done so, time is running out.," Biden said.
As for American goals, Biden said the U.S. "is committed to reduce greenhouse emissions between 50 and 52% below 2005 levels by the year 2030." He also said there was a goal to have a power sector free of carbon in up to 50% of cars sold in the U.S., by 2025 but the White House later corrected this, stating that the goal is to achieve this by 2035.
"This will not only rapidly reduce the rate of global warming, but it will also produce very valuable side-benefit like improving public health and agricultural output," Biden said.
The president concluded by again encouraging others to join him in combating climate change.
"The time is now," he said.