03/05/2021 - Environmental Governance

Biden’s Week One Executive Orders – Mapping Climate Action

President Biden kicked off his administration’s first week by signing a flurry of executive orders (EOs) focused on environmental issues and climate change. We’ve been tracking and analyzing these orders and are excited to share our work with you on our new Week One page.

We created this to connect the instructions in the EOs to the current state of play on the relevant topics, explain what this means for the corresponding agencies’ work, and what we’re likely to see in regulatory and other actions in the next year or so.

We organize the directives by topic area so that you can easily see how they will affect things like energy development (fossil fuels and renewables), science in rulemaking, greenhouse gas regulation, and public lands protections. The concrete impacts of these executive actions aren’t always obvious at first glance. Topics such as environmental justice and the hidden impacts of revoking Trump EOs on disaster resilience haven’t been substantively discussed in relation to these executive orders. In our report, we assess not only the explicit instructions given agencies but also how the president’s revocation of prior orders will impact environmental regulation. We’ve built on our extensive analysis of environmental and energy regulation over the last four years to explain the context in which the agencies will carry out these new directives.

To augment the analysis, we’ve built two comprehensive charts—one listing the Trump executive orders revoked by President Biden’s week one directives, the other showing the deadlines these directives set for agencies, working groups, and task forces.

We hope you find this page helpful in untangling and understanding the effects of these first Biden environmental orders.