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Pallone Outlines Congress' Environmental Goals Under Biden

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Congress is looking at a more ambitious environmental agenda with the Biden Administration.

New Jersey’s Frank Pallone, whose district includes New Brunswick, Edison and Piscataway and is chairman of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, held an online event with environmental activists to discuss environmental legislation passed at year-end and to talk about Congress’ goals for the environment going forward.

Pallone said that legislation passed at the end of 2020 calls for phasing out potent greenhouse gases that lead to global warming. “The Biden Administration is now going to implement this phasedown that basically positions American industry to lead a global transition to cleaner alternatives and creates at the same time thousands of new manufacturing jobs,” said Pallone, who called this one of the most significant actions Congress has taken to combat global warming.

He praised President Biden for wasting no time reversing Trump Administration policies on the environment. “On Day One, on January 20, he issued an executive order to rejoin the Paris Climate Agreement,” Pallone said, “and I think that actually takes effect within 30 days or so, so we’re gonna see a major shift there.”

He said Biden has also issued orders directing executive departments to address Trump Administration actions that harm public health, and revising vehicle fuel economy and emissions standards. 

Pallone said there’s a lot of work to do after the past four years -- restaffing the EPA and beefing up its enforcement, addressing problems with the nation’s power grid and water supply, as well as global warming. But that’s not all, he said.

“We’re hoping that we’ll have a reauthorized Superfund program with the tax on the oil and chemical industries,” he said, “we’re hoping that we can do that as well, but I mean, you see this is a lot, so I don’t want to overpromise -- but that’s the vision.”