Biden touts sale of Gulf of Mexico wind-power leases and jabs at Trump in Philadelphia speech

President Joe Biden on Thursday touted the first sale of offshore-wind-power leases in the Gulf of Mexico as he spoke to workers in the key battleground state of Pennsylvania.

Speaking at the Philly Shipyard about his economic agenda, Biden discussed the Interior Department’s Thursday announcement that the sale will be held Aug. 29. It’s part of the administration’s plan to deploy 30 gigawatts of offshore wind energy by 2030. The Gulf of Mexico sale was proposed in February, as MarketWatch reported at the time.

During the speech, Biden took a jab at former President Donald Trump’s past comments about wind turbines and played up the job-creation potential of laws like the Inflation Reduction Act, which calls for large investments in clean energy
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Now read: Trump’s hatred for windmills looms over one of the nation’s fastest-growing energy sources

“A lot of my friends in organized labor know, when I think climate, I think jobs. I think union jobs,” Biden said.

As MarketWatch’s Rachel Koning Beals has reported, the Biden administration’s 30-gigawatt goal relies largely on using platforms anchored to the sea bottom, with power transported to shore and distributed from there.

The effort is part of a broader goal of reducing U.S. carbon emissions by 50% by 2030. Biden wants a path to net-zero emissions throughout the U.S. economy by 2050. Greenhouse-gas emissions are behind global warming, which is in turn sparking more severe storms, drought and erosion of coastlines.

Biden narrowly won Pennsylvania over Trump in the 2020 presidential election, and the state is almost certain to be a battleground again in next year’s contest.

In his speech, the president took a shot at Trump, who once claimed that the noise from wind turbines can cause cancer.

“Notwithstanding what the other guy said, windmills do not cause cancer,” Biden said.

Trump is leading in polls for the Republican presidential nomination.

Rachel Koning Beals contributed.

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