Biden’s energy policies hurting US, Europe: Here’s the fix
The US has long been a leader in the world’s clean energy revolution, the world’s largest market for solar power, boasting of the largest rooftop solar system in the country with about 24 gigawatts of panels.
And it was the Obama administration which led the way in signing the landmark Paris climate agreement (COP21) in 2015.
With its renewable energy targets, the US has made a global environmental contribution that other carbon-heavy nations such as Canada, China and the European Union have failed to meet.
However, many within the US have been critical of President Barack Obama for abandoning the Paris agreement, and now the country is on the brink of its largest electricity black-out in eight years.
The crisis has its roots in the energy policy of former vice-president Joe Biden. During his time in the White House, Biden’s administration proposed sweeping changes to the U.S. electricity market. In particular, the administration proposed sweeping changes to electricity prices, putting a premium on renewable energy sources such as wind power and solar power, which are considered the future of electricity generation.
According to his plan, energy prices would be set by the market, and that the government would not interfere. Biden has since softened his hardline positions on the issue, acknowledging the need to use state-driven energy markets to generate some of the nation’s energy sources.
Biden’s policies have, however, already had a disproportionate impact on the US, with a drop in energy efficiency in the country, and a rise in its carbon footprint.
And while the Obama administration may have succeeded in convincing the world that a carbon-capable future must be avoided, his plans for Biden’s energy policy have also had the opposite effect in Europe. According to a recent report from the European Commission, the global carbon emissions have grown by 9 percent between 2005 and 2016, an increase which has threatened to overwhelm the EU’s attempts to meet its EU-wide climate goals.
By focusing its efforts on increasing the use of renewable energy, the EU has contributed greatly to the rise in renewables across the globe, which in turn has helped to reduce emissions for the first time since the Clean Development Mechanism was introduced (CDM), creating “a net benefit