Election year is upon us and one of the hottest (pun intended) topics entering this year’s election will be the environment.
You may have seen or heard references to something called the “Green New Deal” which is an homage to the “New Deal”, Franklin Roosevelt’s signature legislation that instilled many of the social programs and government agencies that we are familiar with and rely upon still to this day. The New Deal was in response to the Stock Market crash of 1929 which ultimately lead to the Great Depression.
Again we find ourselves at another turning point in our country as it relates the economy, our health and the impacts that climate change is and will have on the United States. The Green New Deal looks to drastically change how we operate as a country in order to mitigate those impacts.
Although only 14 pages long, there’s a lot to unravel here when you actually dive into the details, or in some cases, lack thereof.
Here are 3 Things to Know about the Green New Deal
- The Green New Deal is not a law, rather a non-binding resolution that was submitted by Senator Edward Markey and Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. Unlike a bill, this type of legislation is not presented to the president and cannot become law. Even if the Green New Deal were to be passed in either legislative chamber, it would still require separate legislation that would have to be introduced to make the ideas become reality.
- Despite what some may say, the Green New Deal does not call for prohibitions of planes, cars, cows, oil, gas or the military. However it will reduce and in some cases completely eliminate the billions of dollars of subsidies that are given to these industries and instead use that money to invest in sustainable alternatives that will promote positive impacts to the environment.
- Here are the main goals of the GND:
- Achieve net-zero greenhouse gas emissions through a fair and just transition for all communities and workers
- Create millions of good, high-wage jobs and ensure prosperity and economic security for all people of the United States
- Invest in the infrastructure and industry of the United States to sustainably meet the challenges of the 21st century
- Secure for all people of the United States for generations to come: clean air and water; climate and community resiliency; healthy food; access to nature; and a sustainable environment
- Promote justice and equity by stopping current, preventing future, and repairing historic oppression of indigenous peoples, communities of color, migrant communities, deindustrialized communities, depopulated rural communities, the poor, low-income workers, women, the elderly, the unhoused, people with disabilities, and youth (“frontline and vulnerable communities”)
With these three talking points, you’ll now be the hit of any party with your new found knowledge of the Green New Deal. You can thank me later.