WASHINGTON — President Obama will sign an executive order on Thursday to cut the federal government’s greenhouse gas emissions, a White House official said, his latest use of presidential power to address the root causes of climate change.
Having failed during his first term to push a cap-and-trade bill through Congress, Mr. Obama has begun a systematic effort to regulate pollution through the existing Clean Air Act, advancing new rules on emissions from cars and trucks, power plants and oil and gas wells.
While the federal government is a relatively small contributor to greenhouse gas emissions, the executive order is the president’s attempt to lead by example and push the private sector to change its behavior as a consequence.
After signing the directive at the White House, Mr. Obama plans to visit the Department of Energy to tour its rooftop solar panels and talk to private suppliers to the federal government that are committing to reducing their greenhouse gas emissions.
Some of the companies will announce that they are setting new goals for reducing future emissions, the official said.