Of course it's vague!
In climate change news: leaders pledge climate action but disappoint activists. The NYT headline on their coverage of this event tells us that the G7 took "aggressive climate action" but all I could discern were vague promises, and the NYT is paywalled these days so I don't read it. Not one penny more than necessary for the Trilateral Commission.
I also saw this piece of publicity, probably about the G7 meeting but it's not certain, since this article from The Hill says nothing about what on Earth Joe Biden was doing visiting the UK. "Trump lashes out after Biden says Joint Chiefs told him greatest threat to US is global warming" reads the headline. Are we now supposed to care what Donald Trump says? Somehow I'm imagining Kent Brockman's voice in an episode of "The Simpsons." In my imagination, Brockman says: "The President said something about the Joint Chiefs of Staff today, so for clarification we reached out to serial liar Donald Trump. Mr. Trump, what do you think about this statement?"
Over at the Daily Poster, also paywalled, Walker Bragman told us as of June 10th that "New Biden hiring moves suggest the administration won’t be prioritizing climate action." So for instance a pick for general counsel to the Treasury Department, Neil MacBride, is a lawyer who has represented ExxonMobil, and a pick for Department of Energy’s assistant secretary for international affairs, Andrew Light, is a sales rep for natural gas. This kind of news is hardly Earth-shaking, as it gives the appearance that Joe Biden is a representative for global capital overall, and so one might expect that among the numerous servants of global capital he's hiring, some are going to be fossil fuel representatives.
Bragman describes Biden's strategy as that of finding a "middle ground" on climate change, but I have a better phrasing. Biden plans to keep the promises so vague that everything will be pledged and nothing will be done. Back on June 2 Nick Martin reported for The New Republic (paywalled, I'm guessing) that The Biden White House is Strangely Calm About our Burning Planet. Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm is out there telling everyone that "Americans didn’t need a deadline for giving up coal," but that's more non-policy. As for actual policy, Kate Aronoff, point journalist for The New Republic, told everyone on June 1 in In These Times that the Biden "Cold War with China" approach was incompatible with climate change mitigation. And as for the G7 meeting? Aronoff also reveals that the corporations are playing the same game of pretend that the governments are playing:
On the eve of wealthy G7 nations’ conference in England this weekend, an “Alliance of CEO Climate Leaders,” convened under the auspices of the World Economic Forum, called on them to “accelerate a just transition.” The letter, signed by 70 chief executives from around the world, urged leaders to catch up with “at least one-fifth of the world’s largest 2,000 public companies” that have already created net-zero pledges. At the letter’s crux is a call for collaboration: “Work together with the private sector for bolder actions on shared ambitions within a clearer and more ambitious policy framework.”
The letter, signed by 70 chief executives from around the world, urged leaders to catch up with “at least one-fifth of the world’s largest 2,000 public companies” that have already created net-zero pledges. At the letter’s crux is a call for collaboration: “Work together with the private sector for bolder actions on shared ambitions within a clearer and more ambitious policy framework.”
Several of the same companies calling for bold action have helped bankroll the politicians who are now keeping climate policy from passing in the world’s biggest economy and its second-biggest polluter: the United States.
By the way, if you were looking through Google trying to find your way past the vast array of headlines telling the world "Biden suspends leases in Alaska's Arctic refuge," here's one: "Biden suspends leases in ANWR, but Supports Other Arctic Drilling." Here's what it means. Toward the end of the Trump administration, in January of this year, there was an oil rights lease sale for the Arctic National Wildlife refuge. Biden is supposed to win some sort of Boy Scout honor for suspending whatever leases were awarded at that sale. Here's the key passage from the piece I cited:
Democrats and Republicans have been arguing over ANWR for decades. In that context, the early 2021 auction was a huge victory for the oil industry.
However, the lease sale was a dramatic bust. No oil majors showed up, and the state of Alaska itself was the main winner of most of the few leases that were successfully awarded. The irony is that after years of battling, the oil industry finally prevailed in the political battle at a time when almost no oil companies actually had an interest in taking a risk on drilling in ANWR.
Unasked by the mainstream media were important questions of whether or not the ANWR had enough easy-to-get-to oil to be "worth it" for drilling. It's very important, you see, that the Biden administration look good while doing things of no real significance. The same goes for its client corporations.