拜登雄心勃勃的气候议程:首日-美国研究中心
Biden’s ambitious climate change agenda: first days — United States Studies Centre
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2021-02-23 17:33
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Mere hours after being inaugurated, President Biden signed a raft of executive orders and other proclamations, all dealing with high profile topics and, in many cases, fulfilling commitments he made during the campaign. But the climate-related actions on the first day, and the subsequent actions taken in the following days, are just the beginning of a wide-ranging and ambitious climate change agenda.

拜登总统宣誓就职后仅仅几个小时,就签署了一系列涉及大众关注度高的行政命令和声明,顶着压力履行他在竞选期间做出的承诺。上任首日就采取应对气候有关的行动,以及后续几天的行动,只是这项雄心勃勃的气候议程的开端。

President Biden signed two key climate-related executive orders on his first day as president. One started the 30-day waiting period before the United States re-joins the Paris Climate Accord (Paris Agreement) and the other, Executive Order 13990, ordered government departments and agencies to address “Federal regulations and other actions during the last 4 years that conflict with these important national objectives, and to immediately commence work to confront the climate crisis.” In other words, President Biden's orders reinstated rules and regulations that were weakened or removed by the Trump administration.

拜登就任总统的首日就签署了两项与气候相关重要的行政命令。首先是美国重新加入《巴黎气候协定》(巴黎协定)需要30天等待期;其次,第13990号行政令,要求政府部门机构以解决过去4年里联邦法规和其他行动中,违背与盟国的约定,并立即着手应对气候危机。换句话说,拜登总统的命令恢复了曾被特朗普政府搁置或撤销的规章制度。

The headline-grabbing item in the second executive order was the cancellation of the Keystone pipeline project stretching from Montana's Canadian border to Nebraska.

第二项行政命令中最受关注的是关闭从蒙大拿州加拿大边境到内布拉斯加州的Keystone输油管道。

The headline-grabbing item in the second executive order was the cancellation of the Keystone pipeline project stretching from Montana's Canadian border to Nebraska. This project, which was disallowed under President Obama and then given the green light by President Trump, was intended to increase the volume of crude oil which could be moved from the tar sands fields in the Canadian province of Alberta to refineries in Illinois, Texas and Oklahoma. Biden's executive order delighted the climate community, for whom the pipeline had a totemic symbolism akin to the Adani mine in Australia. However, it disappointed the Canadians including Prime Minister Trudeau, who had been a project supporter.

第二项行政命令中最受关注的是关闭从蒙大拿州加拿大边境到内布拉斯加州的Keystone输油管道。这个项目曾在奥巴马总统时期被关闭,后来由特朗普总统批准,其目的是增加从加拿大运到伊利诺伊州和得克萨斯州、俄克拉荷马州的原油量。拜登的行政命令使气候领域的专家为之振奋,对他们而言,该管道和澳大利亚阿达尼煤矿一样的图腾象征意义。然而,包括支持者加拿大总理特鲁多在内的加拿大公民对此感到失望。

This same executive order also included measures aimed at:

该行政命令还包括旨在以下方面的措施:

  • limiting carbon emissions from a range of sources including coal-fired power plants, cars and trucks;
  • improving efficiency standards for vehicles and appliances;
  • reinstating wetland protections; and
  • lowering limits on mercury emissions.
  • 限制燃煤发电厂、汽车和卡车等多种来源的碳排放;
  • 提高车辆和电器的效率标准;
  • 恢复湿地保护;
  • 降低汞排放限值。

Many of the efforts will have the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) staff reverse work they did over the past four years, but the Department of the Interior will also have work to do — including pausing oil and gas drilling on federal land and banning it outright in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, another highly symbolic move.

致力于扭转过去四年美国环境保护署工作人员的工作方向,但内务部也不能置之事外,包括暂停并彻底停止境内石油和天然气钻井作业特别是在北极国家野生动物保护区,这又是一个极具高度象征意义的举措。

At a broad level, the Biden administration's actions and announcements were a mix of payback for the climate community and a reset to the regulatory framework that existed at the end of the Obama administration. These initiatives are popular among climate activists but are still well short of what would be needed for the United States to meet the ambitious climate targets President Biden laid out during his campaign: carbon-free electricity by 2035 and net zero national emissions by 2050.

从宏观上看,拜登政府的行动和声明既是对气候领域的响应,也是对奥巴马政府任期结束时存在的监管框架漏洞的重新设定。这些倡议赢得保护环境人士的好感,但仍远低于美国实现拜登总统在竞选期间提出的雄心勃勃的气候目标所需要的努力:到2035年实现无碳发电,到2050年实现全国零排放。

These targets are ambitious and will presumably become US Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) — the specific climate actions and targets each nation makes as being part of the Paris Agreement. Ambitious NDCs will give the United States a measure of renewed climate credibility overseas but to regain a climate leadership role, the United States will need to back up the targets with strong action. To kickstart this process, President Biden has called for a global climate summit of world leaders pushing for greater action and ambition. European leaders are likely to welcome the initiative while China, Australia and perhaps even Canada may be lukewarm, for varying reasons.

这些雄心勃勃的目标有望刊登至国家自主贡献,各国作为参与国签署巴黎协议做出的具体气候行动和目标。此目标声明将使美国在一定程度上恢复其在海外气候问题上的信誉,但为了重新获得气候问题的领导地位,美国需要用强有力的行动来支撑这些目标。为了启动这一进程,拜登总统呼吁世界各国领导人召开全球气候峰会,推动更大的行行动作为。欧洲领导人可能会同意这一倡议,而中国、澳大利亚,甚至加拿大可能会因为各种原因对其持冷淡态度。

Setting ambitious targets and re-engaging with the global community are important but the world has moved on since the Obama years. Overall US carbon emissions, as reported by the Department of Energy's Energy Information Agency (EIA), have dropped by about 15 per cent from their peak 15 years ago but need to drop by double this rate to get to zero by 2050. Furthermore, EIA data shows that power sector emissions are no longer the highest source of US carbon pollution — that honour now rests with the transport sector, which includes the carbon produced by the gasoline and diesel-based cars, trucks and trains. Reduced power sector emissions are the result of plummeting coal use for electricity generation over the past 10 years — a phenomenon that continued unabated during the Trump years. As a result, emissions from electricity generations are down over 33 per cent since their peak in 2005 and remain on a downward trajectory. This does not mean getting to zero by 2035 will be easy but it does mean the focus needs to be less on throttling back coal and more on investment in storage and distribution so that the grid can keep pace with increasing renewables. Political rhetoric about coal will continue but the real action needed to maintain the downward trend for carbon emissions from electricity will be if and how the Biden administration will provide support and infrastructure for more wind and solar.

制定雄心勃勃的目标并与国际社会修复关系固然重要,但自奥巴马执政以来,世界已经向前发展。根据美国能源部下属的能源信息署的报告,美国的碳排放总量已经比15年前的峰值下降了约15%,但要想在2050年之前达到零排放水平,还需要下降一倍。此外,能源信息署的数据显示,电力部门的排放不再是美国碳污染的最大来源,这一哥的位置现在落在了运输部门,包括汽油和柴油驱动的汽车、卡车和火车产生的碳排放。电力部门排放量的减少是由于过去10年发电用煤炭使用量的下降,这一现象在特朗普执政期间有增无减。因此,从2005年的峰值到现在,发电的排放量已经下降了33%以上,并保持持续下滑。这并不意味着到2035年实现煤炭零排放轻而易举,但这确实意味着需要减少对煤炭的限制,更多地投资于存储和分销,这样电网才能跟上不断增长的可再生能源的步伐。有关煤炭的政治言论仍将继续,但维持电力碳排放下降趋势所需的真正行动,将是拜登政府是否以及如何为更多的风能和太阳能提供支持和基础设施。

Government interest in carbon capture and sequestration (CCS) for gas plants will not get many headlines given the strong opposition to CCS from environmental groups but it may be an important supporting technology as wind and solar continue to grow. While the United States gets 30 per cent of its electricity from dispatchable and carbon-free nuclear and hydropower, the Biden administration may decide to place a quiet side hedge on CCS to support a zero-emissions gas generating fleet that can run when there is a gap in the output from wind and solar.

鉴于环保组织的强烈反对,政府对天然气厂的碳捕集与封存的益处不会引起过多关注,但随着风能和太阳能的持续增长,这可能是一项重要的支持技术。美国30%的电力都来自可调度且无碳的核能和水力发电,拜登政府可能会私下支持开发既零排放气体,又能够填补运行时的输出风能和太阳能这两块领域的空白。

Government interest in carbon capture and sequestration for gas plants will not get many headlines given the strong opposition to CCS from environmental groups but it may be an important supporting technology as wind and solar continue to grow.

鉴于环保组织的强烈反对,政府对天然气厂的碳捕集与封存的益处不会引起过多关注,但随着风能和太阳能的持续增长,这可能是一项重要的支持技术。

Gas extraction will face renewed pressure during the Biden administration. New and tougher rules on methane emissions from drilling and transport installations — a major area of focus for environmental groups — seem inevitable. Fracking, cheap gas and a resurgent US manufacturing economy are, however, a politically fraught combination so President Biden will need to tread cautiously. The first step has been the pause on drilling leases on federal lands. This will impact western states like Colorado, New Mexico, Wyoming and North Dakota. Expect to see the gradual imposition of tougher rules for extraction from private land, especially in political swing states like Pennsylvania and Ohio.

在拜登执政期间,天然气开采将面临新的压力。环保组织关注的是更严格的新规落实到钻探和运输设施排放的甲烷。然而,水力压裂法、廉价天然气和复苏美国制造业经济是一个混搭着政治矛盾色彩,因此拜登总统需要谨慎行事。第一步是暂停境内钻探租约。这将影响科罗拉多、新墨西哥、怀俄明和北达科他州等西部州。预计将会看到对私人土地开采的更严格的规定逐步实施,特别是在宾夕法尼亚和俄亥俄这样的政治摇摆州。

The area where President Biden will need to make rapid progress is the transportation sector. US carbon emissions from cars and trucks are down only a few per cent since their 2005 peak, with a larger population cancelling out reductions from improved fuel efficiency standards. Reports suggest President Biden will make early announcements incentivising electric buses and infrastructure for electric vehicles. A 2050 net zero target needs urgent action to accelerate the roll-out of electric vehicles (EVs). Global climate leadership will also need the United States and its auto industry to catch up with the rapid growth in EV sales in both China and parts of Europe. In 2019, EVs represented two per cent of new car sales in the United States versus five per cent in China and well over 10 per cent in some Scandinavian countries. Electrification of the transport sector has the potential to be more bipartisan than other aspects of the climate debate. It will be opposed by the oil and gas lobbyists but it offers auto manufacturers, both new and traditional, an opportunity to win back market share from international competitors and works well with the Biden administration's Buy American efforts.

拜登总统需要迅速取得成效的领域是交通运输业。与2005年的峰值相比,美国汽车和卡车的碳排放量仅下降了几个百分点,人口增多抵消了燃油效率标准提高带来的减排。有报道称,拜登总统将提前宣布鼓励电动公交车和电动汽车的基础设施建设。要实现2050年的净零排放目标,迫切需要采取行动,加速推出电动汽车。全球气候领导者也需要美国及其汽车行业赶上中国和欧洲部分地区电动汽车销售的快速增长。2019年,电动汽车占美国新车销量的2%,而中国为5%,在一些斯堪的纳维亚国家更是远远超过10%。与气候辩证相比看其他方面,交通部门的电气化有可能获得更多的两党支持。它会遭到石油和天然气游说者的反对,但它为新旧汽车制造商提供了一个从国际竞争对手手中赢回市场份额的机会,并与拜登政府的“购买美国货”计划相得益彰。

Biden's presidency comes at a pivotal moment in the climate debate because the time for talk is coming to an end. The climate commitments Biden made in his 2020 presidential campaign require a real change to important aspects of US society and will need massive investment and incentives. While that puts pressure on President Biden and his team, the new administration have the benefit of emergent and rapidly maturing technologies on which to build their emissions reduction program. There are achievable and significant emissions reductions from the power and transport sectors if the Biden administration can leverage the work done over the last few decades developing modern wind and solar generation and vastly improving battery storage options. Future administrations will have less time to act and will most likely need to find emission reductions in sectors like agriculture, farming and industrial processes, where the pathway to decarbonisation is still far from clear. They will hope that the Biden administration spends some time and effort doing the fundamental research and pilot studies in these areas to pave the way for the next suite of decarbonisation initiatives.

拜登的总统任期正值气候辩论的关键时刻,而即将结束此项议程。拜登在2020年总统竞选中做出的气候承诺,需要对美国社会的重要方面做出真正的改变,需要大规模的投资和激励。虽然这给拜登总统和他的团队带来了压力,但新一届政府受益于紧急且迅速成熟的技术,可以在这些技术基础上制定减排计划。如果拜登政府能够利用过去几十年所做的工作,发展现代风能和太阳能发电,并大幅改善电池存储选项,那么电力和交通部门就可以实现显著的减排。未来政府采取行动的时间将更少,而且很可能需要在农业、农业和工业流程等领域找到减排目标,在这些领域,实现脱碳的途径仍远未明确。他们希望拜登政府花些时间和精力在这些领域进行基础研究和试点研究,为下一套脱碳计划铺平道路。

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