White House announces Earth Day climate push

By Kelsey Brugger | 04/18/2022 04:10 PM EDT

The administration wants to counteract claims that the president is giving up on robust climate action ahead of the midterm elections.

President Joe Biden.

President Joe Biden during remarks last week in Greensboro, N.C. Allison Joyce/Getty Images

The Biden administration is rejecting criticism from environmentalists that the president is neglecting his ambitious climate pledges, and today the White House announced plans to use Earth Day to demonstrate how cutting greenhouse gas emissions remains a top priority.

“The press and the pundits may like to declare President Biden’s climate agenda dead, but this week, we will show very much how it is alive and well,” an administration official told reporters on a call this morning.

Tomorrow, the administration will release an update on actions to address hydrofluorocarbons. On Wednesday, officials will showcase clean energy installations. And on Thursday, the Transportation Department will have an announcement related to emissions reductions and the infrastructure law.


President Joe Biden will cap off the week with a trip to Seattle on Friday — the official Earth Day — for an event on how Mother Nature can help combat climate change.

“Throughout the week, we will also reiterate what the president and the American people know: We must do more,” the official said.

With the Democrats’ climate and social spending bill stalled in Congress, the administration is emphasizing the work at federal agencies.

In recent weeks, the White House has taken heat for multiple policy decisions, including some aimed at reducing gasoline prices.

The Department of Energy is moving forward with releases from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve. EPA moved to ease restrictions on ethanol blending. And the Interior Department announced the resumption of onshore oil and gas leases (Greenwire, April 18).

Discussing Friday’s announcement from Interior, the White House official on the call said a federal court order mandated the lease sales and stressed that Interior Secretary Deb Haaland holds discretion to reduce offered acreage by 80 percent (Greenwire, April 15).