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Pope Francis at his weekly general audience at the Vatican on Oct. 7. Photo: Massimo Valicchia/NurPhoto via Getty Images.

Pope Francis encouraged governments and corporations around the world to protect the planet against climate change and help the poor in a TED talk, AP reports.

Why it matters: Francis warned that the world has "roughly fewer than 30" years to reduce carbon emissions and avoid the worst of climate change. He added that the transition from carbon-based fuels should take into account low-income populations and energy sector workers.

What they're saying: “Science tells us, every day with more precision, that it is necessary to act with urgency — I am not exaggerating, science tell us this — if we want to have the hope of avoiding radical changes in the climate and catastrophes,” Francis said, according to AP.

  • “In fact, the earth must be taken care of, cultivated and protected; we cannot continue to squeeze it like an orange. And we can say this, taking care of the Earth is a human right."

The big picture: The Pope also called on investors to exclude companies that don't consider the environment, adding that many religious organization have already done so.

Go deeper

Ben Geman, author of Generate
Jan 16, 2021 - Energy & Environment

Using jobs to keep climate in spotlight

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

President-elect Biden's climate team plans to draw in agencies government-wide, and will emphasize racial justice and job creation in low-carbon industries.

  • But big climate and energy bills will face high hurdles in Congress. So much of Biden's agenda will rest on executive actions that are certain to face intense legal battles.

What they're saying: "When we think about climate change, we think jobs. We think good paying union jobs," Biden said when he unveiled his energy team last month.

  • Biden cited opportunities in areas such as renewable power, electric vehicles and charging, water infrastructure and more.
  • Biden often mentions environmental justice — addressing disproportionate pollution burdens that poor people and communities of color face.

Who watch: Biden’s team is tasked with breathing life into a platform that goes beyond anything contemplated in the Obama years. But executive actions will face legal challenges, and the legislative agenda is constrained by the narrowly divided Congress.

  • Gina McCarthy, the Obama-era EPA boss, will lead a new White House domestic climate policy office. She'll have to ensure that climate stays high on the agenda of a new administration consumed with the pandemic and the economy.
  • Deb Haaland, the nominee for Interior, will be at the helm of some of the most controversial parts of Biden’s energy and climate platform — including what remains a vague plan to thwart oil and gas permitting on federal lands.
Caitlin Owens, author of Vitals
35 mins ago - Health

Who benefits from Biden's move to reopen ACA enrollment

Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Nearly 15 million Americans who are currently uninsured are eligible for coverage on the Affordable Care Act marketplaces, and more than half of them would qualify for subsidies, according to a new Kaiser Family Foundation brief.

Why it matters: President Biden is expected to announce today that he'll be reopening the marketplaces for a special enrollment period from Feb. 15 to May 15, but getting a significant number of people to sign up for coverage will likely require targeted outreach.

2 hours ago - Technology

Big Tech bolts politics

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

Big Tech fed politics. Then it bled politics. Now it wants to be dead to politics. 

Why it matters: The social platforms that profited massively on politics and free speech suddenly want a way out — or at least a way to hide until the heat cools. 

You’ve caught up. Now what?

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