Pressure Mounts on Biden Ahead of Maui Visit: Will He Declare a Climate Emergency?


FILE - Members of a search-and-rescue team walk along a street, Saturday, Aug. 12, 2023, in Lahaina, Hawaii, following heavy damage caused by wildfire. (AP Photo/Rick Bowmer, File)
Reading Time: 2 minutes

As President Joe Biden readies for a visit to wildfire-ravaged Maui, there’s a growing urgency in calls for him to declare a climate emergency.

This follows Maui’s devastating fire blamed on the island’s electricity utility and worsened by climate change, which tragically took 110 lives and left the historic Lahaina town in ashes.

With survivors still reeling, Congress and climate activists are pleading for sweeping presidential action. They urge Biden to use emergency powers to tackle greenhouse gas emissions, advance clean transport, and fund green energy projects.

FILE – Search and rescue team members work in a residential area devastated by a wildfire in Lahaina, Hawaii, Friday, Aug. 18, 2023. When the most deadly U.S. fire in a century ripped across the Hawaiian island, it damaged hundreds of drinking water pipes, resulting in a loss of pressure that likely allowed toxic chemicals along with metals and bacteria into water lines. Experts are using strong language to warn Maui residents in Lahaina and Upper Kula not to filter their own tap water. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong, File)

Some say this could be a political game changer, appealing to younger voters and communities of color hit hardest by climate change. However, critics highlight potential political and legal challenges.

While the White House remains non-committal, many are hoping that witnessing Maui’s devastation firsthand will push the president into making a landmark declaration. So as Biden heads to Hawaii, will he finally make the call?

Click play to listen to the report from AURN White House Correspondent Ebony McMorris. For more news, follow @E_N_McMorris & @aurnonline.

advanced divider
advanced divider