SOMERSET, Mass. (WPRI) — President Joe Biden has made his way back to Washington after announcing new climate change initiatives at the site of the former Brayton Point power plant.
Air Force One touched down around 1:15 p.m. Wednesday at T.F. Green Airport where Gov. Dan McKee, U.S. Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse and Warwick Mayor Frank Picozzi were on hand to greet the president.
Biden was then driven over to Somerset where he delivered his speech before a small crowd, which included his special presidential envoy for climate, John Kerry, as well as Congress members Elizabeth Warren, Ed Markey, Jake Auchincloss and Bill Keating.
His motorcade returned to Warwick where Biden boarded Air Force One, ending his brief visit to Southern New England.
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12 News had live coverage of the president’s visit on both WPRI 12 and right here on WPRI.com. Below is a timeline of updates.
4:15 p.m. – Bye Bye Biden
4 p.m. – 12 News live report prior to Biden’s departure
2:45 p.m. – Biden gives speech on climate change
Photos – Biden gives speech on climate change
2:15 p.m. – Elected officials arrive at Brayton Point
2 p.m. – Motorcade pulls into Somerset
1:45 p.m. – Presidential motorcade passes through Providence
1:30 p.m. – Live interview with Mayor Picozzi
1:15 p.m. – Biden touches down at T.F. Green
1 p.m. – Air Force One flies over RI
12:15 p.m. – Biden departs on Air Force One
12 p.m. – 12 News update on preparations for Biden’s visit
11:30 a.m. – Travel delays possible
Rhode Island State Police told 12 News that people should expect travel delays during that time and avoid travel in the area, if possible. Police shut down portions of I-195, along with on- and off-ramps, for security reasons.
Photos: Preparations for Biden’s visit
Biden announced new actions on climate change while also touring the former Brayton Point power plant and reviewing the site’s conversion into a staging ground for wind energy projects. The coal-fired facility shut down back in 2017.
“We’re happy to see the offshore wind industry moving forward which the administration has played a big part of, and we’re happy to see him in Somerset anytime,” the Somerset Democratic Town Committee’s Jim Pimental said.
Two companies, Prysmian and Avangrid, will be involved in the Commonwealth Wind Cabling Project, which is a $580 million deal to supply submarine power cable links to connect the offshore wind project to the Massachusetts power grid.
The groundbreaking for the manufacturing facility will be around this time next year, the owner of Brayton Point Commerce Center confirmed to 12 News.
Biden was expected to outline how the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act will make various clean-energy investments in Massachusetts, such as $2.5 billion over five years for public transportation, $63 million to expand electric vehicle charging and nearly $6 million to protect against wildfires.
The news of his arrival comes at the same time The Washington Post reports the president is considering declaring a national climate emergency as soon as this week. However, the White House said he will not be making that announcement in Somerset.