USTR Tai calls for bold action to put climate at center of trade policy



Andrea Shalal | Reuters

U.S. Trade Representative Katherine Tai on Thursday laid out her vision for using trade policy to protect the planet and combat climate change, and said the United States must be a leader in preventing a catastrophic environmental chain reaction.

President Joe Biden’s top trade negotiator said U.S. climate protection efforts should not lead to the export of polluting industries to countries with lower standards, and comprehensive, global action was the only solution to meet such challenges.

In a wide-ranging speech at the Center for American Progress, Tai said the World Trade Organization needed new rules to address the current corporate incentives that had resulted in a “race to the bottom” that put countries with higher environmental standards at a competitive disadvantage.

“The science indicates that, the window of opportunity to prevent a catastrophic environmental chain reaction on our planet is closing fast. And the United States must be a leader in the collective effort to work toward a global solution,” Tai said.

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