Yesterday, in a 45-minute speech at Georgetown University, President Obama laid out a comprehensive plan to reduce greenhouse gas pollution in America, prepare our country for the impacts of climate change, and lead global efforts to fight it. The Plan is a recognition that climate change is unequivocal, its primary cause is greenhouse gas pollution from burning fossil fuels, and it is threatening the health of our communities, families, and economy. In his remarks, President Obama said “the question is not whether we need to act… the question now is whether we will have the courage to act before it’s too late.”
The President’s Plan lays out dozens of actions and commitments that will set the Nation on a path to “lead the world in a coordinated assault on a changing climate,” including steps to use less dirty energy, use more clean energy, and waste less energy overall. It also includes a host of measures to make America’s cities, towns, and communities more resilient to the increasingly frequent and severe extreme weather events that come with climate change, and commitments to engage with countries around the world to address climate change as a global challenge.
Time and again in yesterday’s remarks, President Obama emphasized the solid scientific case for action to combat climate change, citing “the overwhelming judgment of science -- of chemistry and physics and millions of measurements”; the fact that 97 percent of scientists agree that the planet is warming and humans are a driver of that change; and that scientific evidence, “accumulated and reviewed over decades” tells us that these changes will have profound impacts on all of humankind.