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Beyond the Paris Agreement: An environmental wishlist for Biden

The US president’s prompt action in rejoining the Paris Agreement has given encouragement to environmentalists at home and abroad. What should be next on his green hit list?

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On his first day in office, US president Joe Biden fulfilled a key campaign promise by signing up the US once again to the Paris Agreement on climate change.

He also cancelled a permit issued by former president Donald Trump for the controversial Keystone XL pipeline and ordered a review of 100 of his predecessor’s policies on environmental issues.

As a clear signal that the new administration is committed to the environment, these moves were warmly welcomed by sustainability advocates, but what should come next?

As the new president starts his first full week in office, Euromoney asked sustainable finance experts what they would most like to see him address over the coming months.

Net-zero commitment

Unsurprisingly, top of the list for many is a clear plan for carbon emissions reduction.

“The administration must pursue economic policies to address climate change,” says Fiona Reynolds, chief executive of the Principles for Responsible Investment (PRI). “It must set a pathway to achieve net-zero by 2050.”

Richard Mattison, chief executive of environmental data and analytics provider Trucost, now part of S&P Global, agrees that net zero should be the next target – but notes that achieving that ambition will mean building “a new energy system and infrastructure”.

“Currently,


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