Environmental justice, a movement that tries to address pollution and other toxic harms that disproportionately affect communities of color, plays a key role in the plan. In it, Mr. Biden set a goal for disadvantaged communities to receive 40 percent of all clean energy and infrastructure benefits. He also made explicit references to tribal communities and called for expanding broadband access to tribal lands.
Elizabeth Kronk Warner, the dean of the S.J. Quinney College of Law at the University of Utah, said she was pleasantly surprised by Mr. Biden’s plan.
“Usually environmental justice is an afterthought or it’s not clearly quantified,” she said. “As a citizen of a tribe, I very much appreciate that he explicitly references tribal communities.”
Evergreen Action, an organization that advocates far-reaching climate goals and is led by a number of former Inslee staffers, also discussed ideas with Mr. Biden’s staff in recent months, the organization said. In a call with reporters on Tuesday morning, senior Biden campaign officials said the proposal was the product of discussions with scientists, climate and environmental justice leaders, union members and leaders, mayors and governors, and representatives from the small-business and manufacturing communities.
According to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, the United Nations’ top climate science body, holding global temperatures to a safe level will require global carbon pollution to fall to “net zero” by 2050 — that is, eliminating as many emissions as we put into the atmosphere.
Mr. Biden’s original plan called for spending $1.7 trillion over ten years with a goal of achieving net-zero emissions before 2050. The new blueprint significantly increases the amount of money and accelerates the timetable to four years.
Paying for it, campaign officials said, will come from a mix of increasing the corporate income tax rate from 21 to 28 percent, “asking the wealthiest Americans to pay their fair share” and some still-undetermined amount of stimulus dollars. Campaign officials added that more details would be released “in the weeks ahead.”