• Biden outlines clean energy plan for net-zero electricity by 2035 and economy wide decarbonisation by 2050

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      Patrick Lavery

      Combustion Industry News Editor

US Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden has announced a proposed initial US$2 trillion (€1.75 trillion) of spending over four years as part of a clean energy plan that would also aim to stimulate jobs growth as the US recovers from the COVID-19 pandemic, should he be elected. According to Mr Biden, the plan would enable the USA to “live up to our responsibilities, meet the challenges of a world at risk of climate catastrophe, build more climate-resilient communities, put millions of skilled workers on the job and make life markedly better and safer for the American people all at once.” Targets of the plan include power generation being decarbonised by 2035, the economy as a whole reaching net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050, and the USA re-joining the Paris Agreement on Climate Change. Analysts of Mr Biden’s announcement have noted that he did not speak of rules to curb fracking, and avoided any mention of oil and gas other than 250,000 jobs that would be created by cleaning up abandoned wells, as well as stopping “golden parachute” payments executives have given themselves before declaring bankruptcy. The clean energy component of the plan is perhaps somewhat more ambitious than is realistically achievable, but is certainly more grounded than some of those of his former Democratic candidacy rivals. Climate change was listed as the top priority issue for the campaign by less than 5% of people in a recent survey, with the economy at 28%, which points to Mr Biden being smart in merging the two issues.