WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, U.S. Senate Environment and Public Works Committee Chairman Tom Carper (D-Del.), a 23-year veteran of the U.S. Navy and Naval Reserves and the last Vietnam War veteran serving in the U.S. Senate, released the following statement after President Biden initiated the process of formally re-entering the United States into the Paris Climate Accord.

“Over the years, I have learned that leadership is not, ‘do as I say,’ it means ‘do as I do.’ Leadership means choosing to do what is right, not what is easy or expedient. Today President Biden chose to lead the world by example and do what is right for our planet. By rejoining the Paris Climate Accord on day one, President Biden is keeping his promise that the United States will lead the global fight to save our planet.

“President Biden is already wasting no time following through on his promise to make climate action a top priority during his presidency. Thankfully so. We have no time to waste. The world’s leading scientists have warned that humanity must limit global warming to no more than 1.5 degrees Celsius to avoid the most catastrophic impacts of climate change. While we can still avoid the most catastrophic consequences of this worsening crisis, it’s going to take a well-coordinated, international effort to do so before it’s too late.

“The Biden Administration recognizes the urgency of addressing the climate crisis and the extensive diplomatic efforts needed to impel the international community to meet emission reduction targets. Now, the United States can once again take a leading role in future international climate talks even beyond the Paris Agreement. At the same time, as the United States makes the nationwide transition to a clean economy, the example we set for the world – not just in words, but in deeds – can help to galvanize our global allies to fight against the greatest threat facing our planet.

“I applaud President Biden’s early, decisive action as a much-needed step in the right direction. Now, the Biden Administration and Congress must each prioritize efforts to put our nation on a path to net-zero emissions by no later than 2050. Together, we must seize the opportunity that comes with this challenge and ensure we leave no communities behind in the transition to a clean economy.”