• Chicago Youth Alliance for Climate Action CYACA

Why The Green New Deal Makes Perfect Sense

 The Green New Deal seems like it has come out of thin air, gaining popular support from politicians and big green organizations alike. The truth though is that this type of legislation not only makes sense, but it has been bubbling up in articles, groups, and state legislatures.

In an Atlantic article by Robinson Meyer, he explains the difficulty of riling support for policies that are technical in the current political environment. He explores the recent development of support for the Green New Deal. The Green New Deal, a policy supported by Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, advocates for a policy that addresses job growth and climate change. It takes job growth and the fight on climate change  by winding them so tightly together it is impossible to uncouple them.

The idea that environmental policy can be a stimulus for jobs is not new. In many states like Illinois, policies like this have gained the greatest support and probability of passing. When unions and environmental groups come together, policies like the Future Energy Jobs Act in Illinois are passed. That policy allows for a mandate on Renewable Energy Credits to be produced in state, increases solar training and job opportunities for Illinoisans, and for expansion of solar into low income communities in the state.

At the federal level however, the tune has been different. Many mention the challenge the Democrats have had on passing policies that are too technical or regulatory like reinterpreting the Clean Air Act for example or Cap and Trade. Most of the time unions fight back hard against their jobs being lost. This push and pull on regulation and job loss has allowed for too many important climate bills to be tossed aside and has failed to address the importance of people in combating climate change.

The Green New Deal changes that completely. It simply says that people have a right to work in a green economy and that this government should push to be a leader in the world’s new green economy. It also stresses the importance of carbon zero policies ambitious enough to meet the Paris Agreement. With traditional manufacturing declining, the green economy would be a way for Americans to be engaged in the manufacturing and production sector without holding on to profit loss, job cuts, and outsourcing. It ensure a livable future for all of us by stimulating the economy and putting people over profit.

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