Biden crafting more centrist plan for climate change policy: report

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Former Vice President Joe Biden is looking to pitch a middle-ground approach to climate change as he faces a field of Democratic presidential primary challengers that has increasingly embraced more sweeping solutions on the issue, Reuters reported Friday.

Heather Zichal, a former Obama administration official who is informally advising Biden’s campaign, told Reuters that part of that plan, which is still being crafted, will likely include recommitting to the Paris climate agreement, the global greenhouse gas emissions pact that President Trump withdrew from in 2017.

{mosads}It could also mean preserving existing emission standards and fuel efficiency requirements, Zichal said.

A second unidentified source told the news agency that Biden’s climate change plan could also seek to embrace energy sources like nuclear and fossil fuel options.

Zichal quickly pushed back on the Reuters report, saying the news outlet “got it wrong” and asserting that Biden “would enact a bold policy to tackle climate change in a meaningful and lasting way.”

“Any suggestion that it wouldn’t is in direct contradiction to his long record of understanding climate change as an existential threat,” she wrote on Twitter.

TJ Ducklo, a spokesperson for Biden’s campaign, also insisted that the Reuters report was inaccurate, adding that the former vice president would address his climate change plan “in the coming weeks.”

In crafting a more middle-ground approach to climate change, Biden is hoping to appeal to working-class voters who may be reluctant to back more extensive approaches to climate change, like the Green New Deal, which ultimately seeks to reduce U.S. greenhouse gas emissions to net zero over a 10-year period.

Several other Democratic presidential hopefuls have backed that proposal, including Sens. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.), Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) and Cory Booker (D-N.J.), as well as Washington Gov. Jay Inslee, who has sought to put climate change at the center of his presidential campaign.

Updated: 3:54 p.m.

Tags 2020 election Climate change Cory Booker Democratic primary Donald Trump Elizabeth Warren Green New Deal Jay Inslee Joe Biden

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