- Category: Climate Change
- Published: Tuesday, 20 April 2021 08:03
- Written by Bill Jaynes
- Hits: 4154
This afternoon, the U.S Secretary of State, Antony J. Blinken gave a speech on U.S. climate change policies under President Joe Biden's administration. It clearly showed that the United States government has made a marked and encouraging turnabout in its policies in the 89 days that President Biden has been in in office. The text of the lengthy speech follows:
PHILIP MERRILL ENVIRONMENTAL CENTER
APRIL 19, 2021
SECRETARY BLINKEN: Well, good afternoon, everyone. And Will, thank you for a wonderful introduction. And thank you for lending us this absolutely spectacular setting and backdrop – certainly the best setting and backdrop I’ve had in my brief tenure as Secretary. And thanks so much to the Chesapeake Bay Foundation for your lasting commitment to save the Bay.
The Chesapeake Bay was formed nearly 12,000 years ago by melting glaciers. Today, it stretches 200 miles and is home to over 3,600 species of plants and animals. A hundred thousand rivers and streams feed over 50 billion gallons of water into the Bay every single day. More than 18 million people live in the watershed, and many rely on it for their livelihood. The local seafood industry alone provides some 34,000 jobs and nearly $900 million in annual income.
And yet, as Will alluded to, warming temperatures caused by human activity are transforming the Bay. Its water is rising. And the land – including where I stand right now – is sinking due to the melting of the glaciers that formed the Bay. If this continues at the current pace, in just 80 years, the Bay will extend inland for miles, overtaking the homes of 3 million people, destroying roads, bridges, farms. Many of the Bay’s plants and animals will die out. So will the fishing industry. To my children’s children, the landscape will be unrecognizable.
We have to stop this from happening while we still can.
That’s why President Biden took steps to rejoin the Paris Agreement right after taking office, and named Secretary Kerry as our nation’s first Special Presidential Envoy for Climate to lead our efforts around the world. It’s also why President Biden invited 40 world leaders to Washington this week for a summit on climate. And it’s why the Biden-Harris administration will do more than any in history to meet our climate crisis. This is already an all-hands-on-deck effort across our government and across our nation. Our future depends on the choices we make today.Add a comment