By Antonella Catanzaro
The Green New Deal is a congressional resolution that has been making waves. It proposes drastic measures to cut carbon emissions while creating jobs and helping the economy in the process. The resolution was proposed by Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York and Senator Ed Markey of Massachusetts in February.
The proposal has served as a call to action for climate change activists, setting off numerous protests including a protest at Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s office, and a sit-in at Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi’s office in support of the Green New Deal. More than one hundred people protested at McConnell’s office, and hundreds sat-in at Pelosi’s office. During the latter, they were even joined by Ocasio-Cortez herself.
Moderate Democrats are wary of the resolution, however. Senator Debbie Stabenow of Michigan has said that “[She understands] the sense of urgency, but [she thinks] a little more time, a little more communication, a little more input from a wider variety of folks on language would have made a difference.” and Senator Joe Manchin, like many others, has deemed it “a dream.”
Representative Matt Gaetz of Florida, who is an avid supporter of President Donald Trump has drafted a “Green Real Deal”. It acknowledges climate change as a threat and states the government should develop technology to reduce greenhouse emissions, but sets no goals and allows all types of energy production. This is quite surprising considering that Trump has called climate change a hoax in the past.
During a recent procedural vote in the Senate forced by McConnell, all fifty-three Republicans voted no, along with four Democrats. The rest of the Democrats voted present (not taking a side), including those who supported the Green New Deal, refusing to play McConnell’s political games.
While the actual resolution may not get anywhere, it has started a conversation. It’s set off protests urging for action against the rising temperatures, and Republican action on climate change. It’s put a name to what needs to be done. The Green New Deal is a spark, and it’s starting a fire.
To read the Green New Deal for yourself go to https://www.congress.gov/116/bills/hres109/BILLS-116hres109ih.pdf
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