The Green New Deal Is Here: See What Dems Have Proposed

Of all the causes U.S. Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez has lent her insta-celebrity status to, the most prominent is the Green New Deal, a plan intended to tackle our pressing environmental problems with a simultaneous economic stimulus package. Now she and Senator Ed Markey have released a joint resolution to kick the plan into action.

Support the Green New Deal by signing this petition

The plan lays out a 10-year shift toward complete reliance on renewable energy with the goal of producing no carbon emissions. To achieve this transformation, the plan calls on the creation of loads of well-paying jobs to move us into the next generation.

The Green New Deal aims to make buildings energy efficient, improving and expanding public transportation options and specifically investing in underserved communities that are the victims of environmental injustice.

At this phase, the legislation is non-binding. It’s more of a mission statement that says we recognize the problem at hand and understand the need to radically address it. Further legislation would be necessary to put these plans and policies into action, but, you know, one step at a time.

Vox’s David Roberts commended the bill:

“It’s worth noting just what a high-wire act the authors of this resolution are attempting. It has to offer enough specifics to give it real shape and ambition, without overprescribing solutions or prejudging differences over secondary questions. It has to please a diverse range of interest groups, from environmental justice to labor to climate, without alienating any of them. It has to stand up to intense scrutiny (much of it sure to be bad faith), with lots of people gunning for it from both the right and center… Given all those demands, the resolution does a remarkably good job of threading the needle.”

In a sense, it’s too early to have all the specifics worked out because they’d be nitpicked and prevent consensus. Ocasio-Cortez and Markey need to get a broad majority on the same page to the greater concept and let the smaller debates occur from there.

So far, that’s been pretty successful, at least on the Democratic end. Already, the bill has about 70 members of Congress signing on as cosponsors. Just as importantly, every major candidate currently running for the presidency has given his or her support to the plan, showing that the Green New Deal could quite legitimately be the future of the Democratic Party.

Unfortunately, the old guard of the party isn’t nearly as wild about it. This week, Nancy Pelosi referred to the plan as “the green dream or whatever,” adding, “Nobody knows what it is, but they’re for it, right?” Well, now people know what it is, Madam Speaker, so are you going to get on board or mock it dismissively in favor of moderate reform that will leave us woefully unprepared for the future ahead?

Take Action

The Green New Deal’s popularity is so strong that even the majority of self-identified conservative Republicans support the plan. The biggest excuse for not pursuing aggressive environmental policy has always been money, so having a simultaneous economic jobs and stimulus plan seems like the ideal way to go.

We can’t allow our leaders to ignore or mischaracterize a solution that’s urgent and just plain makes sense. Show Speaker Pelosi that you support the Green New Deal as the way forward by signing this petition.

128 comments

Annabel Bedini
Annabel B4 hours ago

Dan b
So every factory, power plant, automobile and so on will be kitted out with various devices that capture and convert each of the separate fossil fuel pollutants? How realistic is that? And releasing yet more CO2 into the atmosphere.....!!!!!

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Dan Blossfeld
Dan Blossfeld9 hours ago

By using capture devices, converters, scrubbers, etc. For example, an automotive catalytic converters oxides about 98% of the harmful carbon monoxide to carbon dioxide.

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Annabel Bedini
Annabel Byesterday

Dan B
How?

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Dan Blossfeld
Dan Blossfeld1 days ago

Brian F.,
Yes. My point was that just about we do involved some sort of pollution. Instead of controlling pollution indirectly, by limiting what we do, we should focus our efforts on controlling the pollution directly.

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Brian F
Brian F2 days ago

Dan B/David F It's true that their are some toxic chemicals produced when companies manufacture solar panels, as Anabel explained, but compared to a lifteime of pollution from dirty coal, or natural gas, the solar panels pollute much less. Once the solar panels are made, they don't pollute our air and water unlike dirty coal, natural gas or nuclear with it's waste which must be stored for thousands of years, do. As Anabel explained about natural gas, several toxic chemicals are pumped underground to free up the gas. These highly poisonous chemicals can leach into our water tables, despite assurances from the natural gas industry. Methane also escapes from the well site and pollutes our air. Finally natural gas itself although cleaner than than dirty coal, is still a dirty fossil fuel, and releases some CO2 emissions that are heating up the planet.

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Annabel Bedini
Annabel B3 days ago

David F
The reasoning against solar panels in the site you quote is based on a fatal flaw. The calculations of the amount of CO2 produced in manifacturing panels are based on the use of fossil fuels in the manufacturing process. If they were produced using alternative energy, the CO2 problem would not arise. Q.E.D.

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Annabel Bedini
Annabel B3 days ago

Dan B
Brian F has answered your question. If you consult the many websites on the subject you'll see that fracking entails the use of millions of gallons of water laced with a cocktail of over 50 chemicals which leach into the ground water. In extreme cases so-called 'drinking water' in near-by communities has become flammable.
Also fracking has a limited life. One estimate puts the U.S. reserves at 84 years (Canada does better with 300 years). Sun, wind and water are not going to run out (well, not until the sun explodes!)

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Brian F
Brian F3 days ago

We need to transition into 100% clean renewable energy as quickly as possible and keep all dirty fossil fuels in the ground.

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Brian F
Brian F3 days ago

Dan B Natural gas involves fracking which poisons our water. So it cannot be used as a replacement for dirty coal.

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Dan Blossfeld
Dan Blossfeld3 days ago

Annabel B.,
I am not against solar energy. If it can more efficiently replace current sources, then all the better.

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