US President Announces National Climate Action Plan
25 June 2013: US President Barack Obama presented his Climate Action Plan, which comprises a series of executive actions to reduce carbon pollution, prepare the country for climate change impacts, and lead international efforts to address climate change.
During a speech to present the Plan, 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 Plan addresses a series of actions aimed to reduce carbon emissions, including: reducing carbon pollution from power plants; accelerating clean energy leadership; enhancing the transport sector; and cutting energy waste. Among the Plan's benefits, Obama underscored: keeping air and water clean; sparking innovation across a wide variety of energy technologies; reducing the country's dependence on foreign oil; and, complemented with other energy efficiency measures, reducing energy waste and citizens' gas and utility bills.
UNFCCC Executive Secretary Christiana Figueres applauded the presentation of the US strategy, qualifying the plan as a "necessary next step" to meet a downfall in action at the international level. She noted that "when the US leads action, it also encourages more rapid international efforts to combat climate change by strengthening political trust, building business momentum and driving new technology solutions.” [White House's Press Release] [Factsheet on President Obama's Climate Action Plan] [Details on the Action Plan] [UN Press Release] [UNFCCC Press Release]