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2020 Presidential Election

2020 Environment: Carbon Emissions


  • Carbon released into the air from human activity is known as carbon emissions. It is apart of greenhouse gas emission. [NASA]
  • Carbon is one of the leading causes of environmental pollution and climate change. [Environmental Protection Agency]


  • To reduce carbon emissions, two federal proposals have become popular: (1) tax emissions, (2) cap-and-trade markets. [The Brookings Institute]
  • Economists believe these two options to be the most cost-effective for countries, yet consumers would most likely pay a higher price for fossil fuel energy. [Vox]
  • The Paris Agreement is a global attempt to reduce carbon emissions.
  • The primary goal of the agreement is to limit global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius through various initiatives, including taxing emissions and supporting cap-and-trade markets. [United Nations, Climate Change]

President Trump:


Is against the Paris Agreement

President Trump removed the U.S. from the global agreement. [The Washington Post]

President Trump stated the agreement leaves "taxpayers to absorb the cost in terms of lost jobs, lower wages, shuttered factories, and vastly diminished economic production." [The White House]


Supports tax breaks for carbon capture

In 2018, Trump approved a tax break for companies that use carbon capture technology. [The New York Times


Is against cap-and-trade

In 2019, the Trump administration sued the state of California for its cap-and-trade market (one of the first in the world). [The Wall Street Journal]


Supports planting trees

Feb. 2020: President Trump announced a federal initiative to plant one-trillion trees as an effort to "address climate change by sucking carbon out of the air." [Reuters]


Supports nuclear technology 

President Trump supports nuclear development as apart of strengthening "national security." [The Verge]


Former Vice President Biden:


Supports the Paris Agreement

Biden wants to rejoin the Paris Agreement, an accord he helped develop. [The Washington Post]

Biden has also promised net-zero emissions by 2050. [Associated Press]


Supports taxing carbon emissions

Biden supports taxing businesses' carbon emissions as an effort to reduce greenhouse gasses. [Politico]


Supports cap-and-trade

[The Washington Post]


Supports carbon capture

Biden supports the "development and deployment of carbon capture sequestration technology." [Joe Biden Campaign]

Biden has promised federal support to bring the technology to market and increase development and research. [Joe Biden Campaign]


Supports nuclear technology 

Biden supports developing new nuclear technology as apart of a larger effort to fight carbon emissions and climate change. [Politico]

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