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WRI established its U.S. office in 1982. We work to improve water quality, increase awareness of local climate change impacts, and identify cost-effective emissions-reduction opportunities in the United States. Learn more about our work in the United States.

While reactions to President Obama’s newly announced climate plan have focused on domestic action, the plan actually has potentially significant repercussions for the rest of the world. These repercussions will come in part through his commitment to limit U.S. investments in new coal-fired power plants overseas. If fully implemented, the plan will help ensure that the U.S. government channels its international investments away from fossil fuels and toward clean energy. The move sends a powerful signal—and hopefully, will inspire similar action by other global lenders.

The world has been asking: How will the United States turn its climate change talk into real action? President Obama began to answer that question this week when he announced his National Climate Action Plan, laying out concrete steps to curb climate change at home and abroad, including a policy that would bar the U.S. from financing conventional coal plants internationally.

The concrete steps he described are vital--most importantly because they represent actions, not just words. But everyone should also take note of the starting point in his speech. It reveals the critical role the international climate change process can play in stimulating climate action.

Nate Aden

Research Fellow

Nate Aden is a Research Fellow with WRI’s Global Climate Program, as well as the WRI Ross Center for Sustainable Cities. Nate conducts interdisciplinary research focused industrial sector...

Kirsty Jenkinson

Director, Business Center

Kirsty Jenkinson is Director of WRI’s Markets and Enterprise Program and is responsible for the program’s overall strategy, results, financial development and staff capacity.

The program...

Craig Hanson

Global Director, Food, Forests, and Water Programs

Craig is the Global Director of  Food, Forests & Water at WRI. Craig is responsible for guiding overall programmatic strategy, focus on results, financial development, and staff capacity....

Peter Veit

Director, Land and Resource Rights Initiative

Peter is Director of the Land and Resources Rights (LRR) initiative. LRR seeks to strengthen land tenure and natural resource rights of rural people and communities by: 1) conducting research and...

WRI provides strategic advice on the development of best practices, regulations, and standards for CCS and participates in the development of national and international strategies for CCS deployment, consistent with environmental and social integrity.

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