The Green New Deal Is Important – Why Aren’t We Talking About It?

Image from Flickr.

Image from Flickr.

Story By: Sarah Chavez, Assistant Opinion Editor

The Green New Deal is a program aimed at lowering our carbon footprint, eliminating our dependency on fossil fuels, producing jobs and building infrastructure to avert climate catastrophe. I believe by implementing this proposition we would be able to positively change and eliminate our carbon emissions.

It is not a new concept, actually first mentioned in 2007 by Thomas Friedman in The New York Times, but only started gaining real attention when Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez started talking about it in detail and calling for a real plan.

We are running out of time, so we need to have a plan such as the GND in order to insure the safety of our future especially since we are the ones that are going to have to endure whatever environmental and financial crisis that we will ultimately inherit. It is no longer an option to try to ignore the dire situation that we have created for ourselves.

Young activists have tried and tried to get the one political party that would likely agree to sit down in the future to talk about a plan for the GND to make it a reality, but the Democratic party seems to be avoiding any talk of the GND and climate change all together.

Personally, I am very disappointed that there are so many Democrats willing to ignore this serious topic that we all need to be paying attention to and working together to try and solve.

According to a report by the IPCC, “Global Warming of 1.5°c” we have just a little over a decade before we change the very nature of our world.

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is one of the few people in the Democratic party who has been willing to take a stand and speak out in favor of the matter. The activist group for the GND has made it clear that they just want a commitment from the Democratic party to make a plan in the future, but Ocasio-Cortez has other plans.

Ocasio-Cortez wants to speed things up by asking for a committee on the GND’s behalf which is already proving to be difficult with Republican pushback.

One of the agreements for said committee would be that no one who accepts the fossil fuel industry’s money should be allowed in the committee. This would mean that a chunk of the Democratic party itself would not be able to be part of the GND committee.

On Feb. 7, Ocasio-Cortez and Ed Markey released a 14 page resolution stating their plans for their idea of the GND. They would like to influence the U.S. into using only 100% renewable and clean energy. They would focus on investments to electric cars and high-speed rail systems. Their resolution would be that we would reduce our carbon footprint as much as we possibly can.

This may appear like the matter is out of the civilians hands and that there is little for us that we are able to do at the moment, but the fact that we are able to talk about the matter should be good enough.

The people in charge are going to dictate the future they won’t live to see. That is our problem. That should raise a lot of eyebrows, especially for the majority of Americans. It may be “too political” or “stressful” to take time out of your day to pick a stance, but the GND brings up a lot of questions for the future of where our energy comes from, how it affects our environment, and how it will affect the economy.

There are a lot of younger people who would rather not get into politics for fear it might cause some disturbance between friendships and family members, but this affects our very livelihood and the livelihood for the next generation that we would bring into this world.

Many who are afraid of change argue that if the U.S. took on the Green New Deal and dramatically changed our economy, not only would it be an outrageous expense but the U.S. would be alone in the world–sacrificing everything for everyone, getting nothing in return.

Even if we were the only country implementing this proposition it would still make a difference because our country leads the world. And in a situation where life as we know it is rapidly approaching a cliff, no expense is too high.