Environmental advocates, trade experts and lawyers told me this shift will help build a global consensus to avert the worst effects of climate change, even though it may rattle certain allies. It will allow Biden to beef up environmental standards at home without the risk of American businesses losing out to companies that operate in countries with laxer environmental standards, they say.
The shift under Biden could spell a major change in the country’s trade approach.
The issue could come to a head sooner than later: More than 100 lawmakers sent a letter yesterday urging Biden to add Paris commitments to the U.S.-Mexico-Canada trade deal.
After all, although the United States routinely signs trade agreements that include environmental provisions, critics say that those commitments lack teeth.
And the U.S. trade record is even more sparse when it comes to climate change issues specifically. Republicans in 2016 successfully pushed for a measure to limit the fast-tracking of any deals that require domestic carbon cuts. When the U.S.-Mexico-Canada trade deal was signed two years later under President Trump, its language made no explicit mention of climate change.