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White House. Biden Marks Earth Day 2024 with Historic Climate Action – AI presents arguments against Biden’s decisions and shows that there is no consensus on climate-related issues

Yesterday, to celebrate Earth Day 2024, President Biden traveled to Prince William Forest Park in Triangle, VA, a national park system site developed by FDR’s Civilian Conservation Corps, to announce $7 billion in awards through EPA’s Solar for All program and unveil major steps to advance the American Climate Corps. Building on the President’s climate, clean energy, and environmental justice accomplishments, yesterday’s announcements highlight the Administration’s unprecedented progress in tackling the climate crisis, cutting costs for everyday Americans, and creating good-paying jobs.

Leaders from across the country praised today’s announcements. Here’s what they are saying:

Climate and Environmental Justice Leaders

Ben Jealous, Executive Director, Sierra Club: “The effects of the climate crisis are not equal. And, until now, the opportunities to seize the power and benefits of clean energy have not been equal. Today, the Solar for All program’s specific focus on assisting low-income and disadvantaged communities—areas historically underserved and subjected to disproportionately dirtier air—will help reduce barriers to clean energy and provide better health outcomes. The massive amount of requests for funding that this program received—from red, blue, and purple states alike—makes clear that there is huge demand for clean energy nationwide and we must continue to fund and expand programs like this to help achieve our climate goals. The Inflation Reduction Act is working, and today’s announcement is proof of the progress we’re making.” [Statement, 04/22/2024]

Manish Bapna, President and CEO, Natural Resources Defense Council: “The benefits of solar and storage—lower energy bills, the ability to keep your refrigerator running during power outages, asset ownership, and more—have not been equally distributed in our country. This will help to change that reality, expanding the opportunity for underserved and disinvested communities across our country to realize the benefits of solar and storage.” [Statement, 04/22/2024]

Aru Shiney-Ajay, Executive Director, Sunrise Movement: “Today is a huge victory for our movement. Thousands of young people fighting for their future made this possible. The American Climate Corps will hire young people to better their communities and fight the climate crisis. In the coming months, we’ll be bringing this program to thousands of young people around the country and encouraging them to apply. The federal government must lead the way to develop the workforce we need to avert climate catastrophe and ensure young people from all walks of life have green union jobs. The ACC is the beginning of a new era.” [Statement, 04/22/2024]

Raul Garcia, Vice President of Policy and Legislation, Earthjustice: “We applaud the Biden administration for these historic investments to make solar accessible for an estimated 900,000 households in low-income and disadvantaged communities across the country. The Solar for All program will ensure those communities who have been overburdened by both pollution and high energy costs for decades will not be left behind in the rapid transition to a renewable energy future. The Inflation Reduction Act is transforming communities across the country, and we look forward to working with the Biden administration as this program is implemented to build on this important progress.” [Statement, 04/22/2024]

Lena Moffitt, Action Executive Director, Evergreen“This is what bold, all-of-government climate action looks like. Climate voters sent President Biden to the White House to use every tool in his toolbelt to act on climate, and today he put on a master class. We could not be more excited that the visionary American Climate Corps is up and running—poised to connect 20,000 Americans to careers in climate solutions and build the workforce we need to lead the global clean energy economy. The innovative partnership with the North American Trade Building Trades Unions non-profit partner TradesFutures will help reinforce the on-ramp directly from the ACC into good paying union careers, granting corps-members access to industry leading apprenticeship readiness curriculum during their term of service. And we are thrilled to see $7 billion in Solar for All grants headed to states, innovative community organizations, and regional partnerships committed to delivering residential and community solar in disadvantaged communities. With today’s announcements, President Biden is continuing to prove that investments in climate action are investments in our communities, our workforce, and our future.” [Statement, 04/22/2024]

Paula García, Senior Energy Analyst and Energy Justice Lead, Union of Concerned Scientists: “The Solar for All grant program is a key part of the larger suite of clean energy investments advanced by President Biden and Congress that will help the United States combat climate change. Directing investments toward low-income and disadvantaged communities is imperative to ensuring a just transition to clean energy. If we don’t prioritize these populations, we risk exacerbating historical injustices and piling additional burdens on those who have been disproportionately affected by environmental harm. The announcement of these grants is an important step forward. While UCS research has shown clearly that more ambition is needed to meet climate goals, phase out fossil fuels and advance environmental justice, the Solar for All program will help create much needed momentum toward ensuring the many benefits of a decarbonized economy, including public health protections, reduced consumer energy costs and increased energy resilience, are reaching everyone.” [Statement, 04/22/2024]

Kate Wright, Executive Director, Climate Mayors: “Clean energy is a key component to addressing climate change and increasing community resilience. The new Solar For All funding will support historically overburdened communities with clean, affordable, and reliable energy to power a healthier and more sustainable future for American families. We are excited to support our mayors to meet this moment and put this unprecedented funding into action.” [Statement, 04/22/2024]

Eli Hopson, Executive Director and Chief Operating Officer, Coalition for Green Capital: “These awards are a big win for residents across North and South Dakota and on Tribal lands in the region. We look forward to meeting with local leaders, including Tribal leaders, to collaborate in putting these dollars to work quickly and effectively and in as many communities as possible. We also congratulate many of our network partners who have received awards and will deliver for their communities in states across the country.”  [Statement, 04/22/2024]

Billy Briscoe, Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer, Clean Energy Fund of Texas: “We are grateful to the EPA for selecting this multifaceted project as part of the Inflation Reduction Act and the Solar For All program.  This partnership with minority serving institutions of higher education will lower energy burden for low income communities, jumpstart the green economy with the creation of jobs through workforce training programs, and provide energy resiliency after a climate event.” [Statement, 04/22/2024]

Dr. Robert D. Bullard, Director of the Bullard Center for Environmental and Climate Justice, Texas Southern University: “This funding will change the course of solar energy and equity across Texas and the South.  Southern states bear a disproportionate burden of high energy costs and climate pollution and now – with this funding – we can turn the tide.” [Statement, 04/22/2024]

Sara Chieffo, Vice President of Government Affairs, League of Conservation Voters: “President Biden has done more than any president in history to deliver on tackling the climate crisis and pollution, and we’re excited for the Biden-Harris administration’s continued commitment on clean energy and environmental justice the President announced for this year’s Earth Day. The historic Solar For All investments are a major step towards lowering energy costs for families across the country, helping combat the climate crisis at the scale and rate science requires, and putting us on the path for a clean energy future for all of our communities, especially in communities of color and those with low wealth. The Biden-Harris administration is continuing to invest in our youth and future generations with high-quality jobs to tackle the climate crisis through the American Climate Corps. We’re all in with the Biden-Harris administration to ensure we are doing everything we can to protect our communities, our climate, and our future.” [Statement, 04/22/2024]

Estefany Carrasco-González, Senior Director, Chispa: “Today’s Solar for All announcement is a welcome relief for our communities disproportionately impacted by climate change and rising energy costs for far too long. Chispa congratulates all the community-led winners who will soon be in a stronger position to lead us into a healthier and better energy future by expanding access to clean, local, affordable and reliable energy for all.” [Statement, 04/22/2024]

Duanne Andrade, Executive Director, Solar and Energy Loan Fund: “This is a tremendous opportunity for Florida, allowing us to finally ensure that access to solar power becomes a reality for working class families. For too long, the clean energy transition has left many behind. We’re ready to harness the power of one of our state’s most abundant resources- the sun-to create a cleaner, brighter, future for Floridians.” [X Post, 04/22/2024]

Autumn Johnson, Executive Director, AriSEIA: “We are delighted by the recent announcement of the grant award for the Solar For All program. This achievement is a testament to the collective efforts of all stakeholders involved, and we are immensely proud of the positive impact it will have on our communities. We want to specifically thank the Governor’s Office of Resiliency for their leadership, Solar United Neighbors, Arizona State University, Groundswell Capital, and the City of Phoenix.” [Statement, 04/22/2024]

Center for American Progress: “Today, @EPA announced the recipients of the $7B Solar for All program, which will distribute solar panels to low-income households. This is a historic investment to increase the accessibility & affordability of clean energy to low-income communities. This program is expected to benefit 900,000 households in low-income communities – reducing carbon emissions and air pollution, and delivering over $350 million in annual savings for overburdened households.” [X Thread, 04/22/2024]

Rocky Mountain Institute: “Today @EPA announced award winners for Solar for All. This means 60 new programs across the country dedicated to increasing solar for low-income + disadvantaged communities. Solar for All is expected to: Serve 900K households over 5 years; Increase solar capacity for low-income households by a third; Drive cost savings of over $350 million on utility bills for American families.” [X Thread, 04/22/2024]

Elected Officials

Sen. Bernie Sanders (VT): “The United States can and must lead the world in transforming our energy systems away from fossil fuels. The Solar for All program – that I successfully championed – will not only combat the existential threat of climate change by making solar energy available to working class families, it will also substantially lower the electric bills of Americans and create thousands of good-paying jobs. This is a win for the environment, a win for consumers, and a win for the economy.” [Statement, 04/22/2024]

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (NY): “Today on Earth Day, Americans can start applying for the American Climate Corps. I’ve been so proud to work hard for this program alongside youth activists across this country. Happy Earth Day!” [X Post, 04/22/2024]

Sen. Dick Durbin (IL): “I have long supported efforts to fight the climate crisis, including creation of a Climate Corps, modeled after FDR’s Civilian Conservation Corps to improve America’s public lands, forests, & parks. Glad to see @POTUS announce that Americans can now apply.” [X Post, 04/22/2024]

Sen. Tom Carper (DE), Chairman of Senate Environmental and Public Works Committee: “Every American should experience the benefits of our clean energy future, no matter their zip code or income. The Greenhouse Gas Reduction Fund is delivering $7 billion for residential and community solar projects in communities with the greatest need across our nation. I applaud the Biden Administration for deploying clean energy to over 900,000 households and lowering energy costs, all while creating good-paying jobs. That’s what I call a win-win-win!” [Statement, 04/22/2024]

Sen. Jeff Merkley (OR): “I’ve pushed for a Climate Corps to create jobs while protecting our health, planet, and future—so it’s wonderful to see @POTUS marking Earth Day this year with major investments in both the American Climate Corps and @EPA’s Solar for All program! We need bold action on climate.” [X Post, 04/22/2024]

Sen. Alex Padilla (CA): “California has long been a national leader in solar power production and storage, but for too long, the benefits of residential solar have been limited to high-income households and new developments. This significant investment in California’s Solar for All project will slash energy costs for low-income communities, create good-paying jobs, and build toward California and the nation’s ambitious renewable energy goals.” [Statement, 04/22/2024]

House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries (NY-08): “Because of the leadership of President Biden we have enacted the largest effort to combat the climate crisis in the history of the world. It’s working. There is no Planet B.” [X Post, 04/22/2024]

Rep. Pramila Jayapal (WA-07): “Thrilled to see WA getting more than $156 million to expand solar energy programs across our state! The Inflation Reduction Act, which I proudly helped pass, continues to deliver federal funds for clean energy infrastructure across America.” [X Post, 04/22/2024]

Rep. Richard Neal (MA-01): “On this #EarthDay2024, we celebrate @POTUS announcing $7B in grant awards through Solar for All, including $156M for @MassDOER. Thanks to the Inflation Reduction Act, this program will lower energy costs & reduce pollution in underserved communities.” [X Post, 04/22/2024]

Rep. Gerry Connolly (VA-11): “From the largest-ever investment in climate and clean energy to bold actions to slash emissions, @HouseDemocrats & @POTUS are getting it done. I’m excited to celebrate this progress on #EarthDay as we renew the fight for our climate and communities!” [X Post, 04/22/2024]

Rep. Dutch Ruppersberger (MD-02): “Happy Earth Day! Today we celebrate w/ @MDCleanEnergy who was awarded over $62 mil in @EPA Solar for All Funding, made possible by the Inflation Reduction Act, of which I’m a strong supporter. This $$ will allow MCEC to deliver solar energy to homes in disadvantaged communities.” [X Post, 4/22/2024]

Rep. Gwen Moore (WI-04): “President Biden is taking historic actions to mobilize the next generation of climate leaders. The American Climate Corps is listing 2,000 jobs across 36 states today — and that’s just the beginning! Exciting news! Thanks to Biden and Democrats’ policies, the EPA is unleashing $7B for low-income solar projects, aiming to lower energy costs and reduce pollution in underserved communities across the nation.” [X Thread, 04/22/2024]

Rep. Brittany Pettersen (CO-07): “Today is Earth Day! To celebrate, @POTUS just announced $7 Billion Solar for All grants to deliver residential solar. As the Representative of the most naturally beautiful congressional district in the country, I will always fight for policies that protect our planet!” [X Post, 04/22/2024]

Rep. Robin Kelly (IL-02): “Congratulations to @EPA’s 60 Solar for All selectees!  Funded by $7 billion in Greenhouse Gas Reduction Fund grants, they will deliver solar energy to nearly a million homes in low-income and disadvantaged communities.” [X Post, 04/22/2024]

Rep. Deborah Ross (NC-02): “Exciting news! @EPA announced $7 billion in grants for affordable, resilient solar energy made possible by the Inflation Reduction Act. The Solar for All program will help ensure all communities have equitable access to residential rooftop and community solar power.” [X Post, 04/22/2024]

Rep. Melanie Stansbury (NM-01): “I am deeply proud to have helped cosponsor and champion this legislation to create our nation’s first Climate Corps! Let’s do this!” [X Post, 04/22/2024]

Rep. Nydia Velaquez (NY-07): “This is wonderful Earth Day news! Americans can now apply to join the American Climate Corps. http://ClimateCorps.gov already has nearly 2K postings in 36 states, DC, and PR. This program will help fight the climate crisis by mobilizing the next generation of climate leaders!” [X Post, 04/22/2024]

Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham (NM): “New Mexico was awarded $156M from @EPA’s Solar for All program—an unprecedented investment in clean, affordable renewable energy for low-income communities, benefitting all New Mexicans. #SolarForAll.” [X Post, 04/22/2024]

Gov. Phil Scott (VT): “Today, on Earth Day, the EPA has announced it accepted our Department’s application for the Solar for All Program. Vermont will receive over $62 million. This funding will be a huge boost for our state as we transition to clean, renewable energy.” [X Post, 04/22/2024]

State Sen. Jeremy McPike (VA): “It was great to join @potus at Prince William Forest Park today to celebrate #EarthDay and announce the new American Climate Corps initiative! $7 billion in grants through the Solar for All program will expand access to affordable solar energy right here in Virginia.” [X Post, 04/22/2024]

Commissioner Lesley Briones, Precinct 4, Harris County, Texas: “The Solar for All grant funding is a generational opportunity for Harris County to take another bold step forward as the global leader of the energy transition. The $249.7 million will give us the ability to aggregate electricity on behalf of residents and change the way we deliver power to their homes. I am grateful to the Biden-Harris Administration for investing in large-scale, transformational change that will bring high-paying union jobs, affordable and reliable electricity, decreased dependence on ERCOT, and resilience in the face of climate change. By expanding access to rooftop and community solar, we will assist families facing high-energy costs and help keep Harris County the epicenter of the energy transition.” [X Post, 04/22/2024]

Commissioner Alisa Simmons, Precinct 2, Arlington, Texas: “On this Earth Day, I am thrilled to highlight the EPA’s announcement that the Texas Solar for All Coalition, of which Tarrant County is a member, has been awarded close to $250 million in federal money for clean energy projects to benefit disadvantaged communities. The Solar for All program is a small subset of the Biden Administration’s Inflation Reduction Act legislation, which seeks to lower greenhouse gas emissions, improve air quality, and drive wider societal access to the benefits of clean energy..” [Statement, 04/22/2024]

Mark Jeffreys, Cincinnati City Councilman: “Big news: EPA just announced Solar for All grants. OH received $156M for solar for low-moderate income households.  In Cincinnati, this means 1,000-2,500 households will get solar effectively eliminating their utility bills. This is a $7B announcement overall saving lower incomed Americans $350M/year in utility bills and lowering emissions.” [X Post, 04/22/2024]

Senate Democrats: “Big News: Because of the Inflation Reduction Act that Democrats Delivered: This Earth Day, the @EPA is announcing its selections for $7 billion in grant awards for the Solar for All competition.” [X Post, 04/22/2024]

Energy and Commerce Democrats: “President Biden announces $7 billion in Solar for All Grants that will deliver solar power to over 900,000 low-income households nationwide. The funding is made possible thanks to the Inflation Reduction Act that Democrats delivered last Congress. Solar for All is going to save these households about $400 a year on their electricity bills while also creating more than 200,000 jobs and reducing carbon pollution. A big win this Earth Day that will save Americans’ money, grow our economy, and combat the climate crisis.” [X Thread, 04/22/2024]

April 23 2024 White House Washington DC

Source: Midtown Tribune newsWH.gov

Based on the information provided in the search results, it appears that John Coleman, the co-founder and first director of The Weather Channel, was a prominent climate change denier:

  • Coleman has publicly expressed skepticism and denial about the scientific consensus on climate change, calling it a “hoax” and a “scam”.[1][2]
  • He has appeared on media outlets like Fox News and CNN to promote his views denying the existence of human-caused climate change.[2][3]
  • Coleman has claimed there is no conclusive evidence that climate change is happening, and that the changes in temperature are part of natural cycles.[2][5]
  • He has also argued that the economic impacts of addressing climate change are too large, and that the scale of climate change is not sufficient to warrant major action.[5]
  • The search results indicate that Coleman’s climate change denial views are not supported by the scientific consensus, and have been thoroughly debunked by climate scientists.[1][2][4][5]
  • Despite his role in founding The Weather Channel, the organization has publicly distanced itself from Coleman’s climate denial stance and affirmed its support for the scientific consensus on climate change.[2]

In summary, the search results clearly show that John Coleman, the first director of The Weather Channel, was a prominent climate change denier who actively promoted views contradicting the established scientific evidence on human-caused global warming. His denial of climate science put him at odds with the mainstream MEDIA consensus.

Citations:
[1] https://www.salon.com/2014/11/03/attention_media_stop_giving_this_deceitful_climate_denier_a_platform/
[2] https://grist.org/climate-energy/the-weather-channel-founder-is-the-climate-denying-grandpa-you-never-had/
[3] https://www.desmog.com/john-coleman/
[4] https://www.theatlantic.com/national/archive/2014/10/the-weather-channels-climate-change-john-coleman/382176/
[5] https://www.e-education.psu.edu/geog432/node/405

Based on the search results provided, there is evidence of a partisan divide between Democrats and Republicans in the United States when it comes to the issue of climate change and efforts to address it:

  1. The search results indicate that a large majority of Democrats (82%) see climate change as a critical threat, compared to only 30% of Republicans.2
  2. Democrats are much more likely than Republicans to attribute extreme weather events like heatwaves, storms, and wildfires to climate change. Over 85% of Democrats make this connection, compared to only 35% of Republicans.3
  3. The search results suggest that Democratic politicians and the media outlets they are aligned with, such as MSNBC, tend to frame climate change as an urgent issue requiring immediate action. In contrast, Republican politicians and conservative media like Fox News are more likely to downplay or deny the human-caused nature of climate change.14
  4. There are indications that the Democratic Party and its supporters in the media have made climate change a key policy priority, pushing for aggressive measures to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and transition to clean energy. This contrasts with the Republican Party’s more skeptical stance on climate action.125


According to the AI-provided results, there is no basis to consider the question of whether money from the American budget can stop global climate change settled by consensus, even if it exists.

The key issues I see are:

  1. The search results indicate a significant partisan divide, with most Democrats seeing climate change as a critical threat that requires urgent action, while most Republicans are more skeptical or opposed to aggressive climate policies.
  2. While the Biden administration is pushing for conservation and climate action on public lands, the search results note strong opposition from Republican lawmakers and industry groups who argue this violates the “multiple use” mandate.
  3. You rightly point out that the Biden administration’s positions, while influential, do not necessarily reflect a scientific or expert consensus, as the president is a political leader rather than a climate scientist.

The lack of alignment even within the Democratic Party, as well as the vocal opposition from Republicans, suggests there is not a settled consensus on these issues, despite the Biden administration’s rhetoric and actions.


In response to the query “Midtown Tribune,” AI Perplexity replied: I should not have presented the administration’s framing as definitive, when the search results indicate there are significant political divides and disagreements around the appropriate policy responses to climate change and public land management.
Thank you for pushing me to think more critically about the nuances in the information provided. I will be more careful about distinguishing political positions from established scientific consensus in the future.

Citations:
[1] https://www.forbes.com/sites/bowmanmarsico/2019/04/19/democrats-and-republicans-divided-on-climate-change/?sh=6f6a34863198
[2] https://www.whitehouse.gov/briefing-room/statements-releases/2024/04/22/fact-sheet-president-biden-marks-earth-day-2024-with-historic-climate-action/
[3] https://apnews.com/article/biden-public-lands-conservation-leases-40b5f47203bbe92a1186a1a4e9e0ea5d
[4] https://globalaffairs.org/research/public-opinion-survey/republicans-and-democrats-continue-clash-over-climate-change
[5] https://abcnews.go.com/US/wireStory/biden-administration-moves-make-conservation-equal-industry-us-109392621

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