Spotlight Activity: US Mid-Term Elections Have Potential to Affect Climate Change Policy
In November 2018, the U.S. held midterm congressional elections, in which many districts across the country elected new, more left-leaning representatives. Called a “blue wave” by some news outlets, the shift to Democratic control of the U.S. House of Representatives promised to herald a new era of resistance to President Trump’s and the Republicans’ increasing rollbacks of public policy regulations.
Among the newly-elected representatives is Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, a 29-year-old progressive from NY-14, who ran on a far-left platform promising living wages for all and a plan to address climate change. Shortly after she was elected, and before she was sworn into office, she attended a climate protest in Washington, D.C. and brought the “Green New Deal” into the national spotlight.
The “Green New Deal” (GND) is an ambitious plan that proposes to completely decarbonize the American economy through a massive investment in renewable energy, green jobs, and infrastructure. First laid out several years ago, the proposal only became widely recognized and discussed in the national media upon its introduction by Congresswoman Ocasio-Cortez.
Status: Right Direction
At a time when the federal government is attempting to roll back every existing climate regulations and prevent any new regulations from being put in place, the momentum behind the Green New Deal proposal offers hope for climate action under the new House of Representatives. Although the Senate and presidency are still Republican-controlled, action on climate change policy now has greater potential.
Additionally, discussions of the practical implications of a Green New Deal have entered the public spotlight, allowing public discourse to move beyond simply a discussion of whether climate change is real, into a discussion of how best to solve the issue.
Action Alert Message:
The time for climate action is now. As Speaker of the House, I urge you to support a Green New Deal and implement swift, drastic carbon emission reductions.
Send a message to the representative of your Congressional district. Use this tool to find his/her contact information: https://www.house.gov/representatives/find-your-representative