Green New Deal
“There is talk everywhere of a ‘Green New Deal.’ But what this looks like and how we get there needs to be hammered out.” —Geoff Lawton
Excerpt from the new documentary “Green is the New Silver (Lining): Crisis, Hope, and Permaculture.” See full documentary here.
Last fall, on November 13th, dozens of activists with the Sunrise Movement stormed Nancy Pelosi’s San Francisco office demanding support for the Green New Deal (GND). Joining them in this now famous action was Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, who has been a leader in the promotion of a GND. They demanded action—now—and they rejected the all-too-common political refrain, “We’ll look into it.”
Look into it? What is there to look into when we understand the problems and know what the solutions are? The time for action is now! And that’s where all of us working for a sustainable and socially just future come in. Everyone can play a role and do their part. For those of us in the sustainability movement the GND will be wind in our sails and offer a mainstream reference for much of the work we’re doing.
Hardly a day goes by now without the GND being in the news. Although it is gaining momentum on many fronts there is also strong resistance to it, and for good reason: the GND is a social and ecological revolution that the status quo fears. What would happen to the oil and gas industry if their profits went down? The politicians that the oil and gas lobbyists have supported know that their political careers will be in jeopardy if they don’t reject the GND; hence the vitriolic and condescending rhetoric coming from Republicans and Democrats alike.
But due to the GND’s popularity, some Republicans have decided to at least pay favorable lip service to it.
“The sort of Green New Deal the resolution describes poses an existential threat to entrenched, deep-pocketed industries that donate to Democrats. Building a constituency powerful enough to challenge fossil fuel producers, automakers and utilities requires support from the labor movement.” —Huffington Post, February 7, 2019
Unlike the original New Deal, the GND has a strong anti-racist, social justice component to ensure that it’s a movement for everyone.
The lack of political support for the GND does not mean it’s going away. Those of us working for a socially just and sustainable future will continue to do the work we’re doing, but with the larger political debate finally getting some important memes into the mainstream that we can reference.
As the GND goes mainstream undoubtedly there will be greenwashing. It’s up to us to ensure that a sustainable future is possible and that good ideas like the GND don’t get put on the back burner while politicians “look into” the proposals.
The Sunrise Movement is at the forefront of political action supporting the GND. This month they are launching a two-month “Road to a Green New Deal” tour and will be hosting dozens of events nationwide. If you’re interested you may be able to host a tour event.
The Green New Deal is a good deal.