President Biden kicked off the Leaders Summit on Climate Thursday with welcoming remarks, calling on the world leaders to take action to combat climate change collectively as he announced an aggressive new goal for greenhouse gas emissions.
The first moments of Biden’s remarks, including the entirety of introductory remarks by Vice President Kamala Harris, were wracked with audio issues. The pool was unable to provide the summit live to television networks, a last-minute change, so reporters were reliant on a whitehouse.gov feed.
Biden pointed to actions the US would take, an effort to reassert US leadership and put the US back to the center of the global effort to address the climate crisis after the Trump administration largely disengaged.
“The signs are unmistakable, the science is undeniable that the cost of inaction, it just keeps mounting. The United States isn’t waiting. We are resolving to take action, not only our federal government, but our cities and our states all across our country, small businesses, large corporations, American workers in every field,” he said.
Biden focused on the job creation aspect of addressing the climate crisis in his remarks, suggesting he sees “an opportunity to create millions of good-paying middle class union jobs.”
“When I talk about climate, I think jobs. Within our climate response lies an extraordinary job creation and economic opportunity ready to be fired up,” Biden said, going on to urge investment in infrastructure.
“I want to build critical infrastructure to produce and deploy clean technology, both those we can harness today and those we will invent tomorrow,” he said.
Harris made brief introductory remarks ahead of Biden, outlining how the leaders present share the common concern of climate change.
“As a global community, it is imperative that we act quickly and together,” she said, calling for innovation and collaboration “around the world.”