As the Green New Deal program has met headwinds in Washington, many states have plowed ahead with efforts to correct injustices and create good jobs as part of programs to fight climate change by reducing greenhouse gas emissions. “The Green New Deal in the States –Part 1” reviewed the climate, jobs, and justice programs in Hawaii and Illinois. This commentary examines the extensive Green New Deal-style programs that California has instituted this year and draws conclusions from the experience of many states.
Just since the start of 2021 there has been a wave of state legislation and executive action that sets and implements new standards for greenhouse gas emissions. States have greatly expanded their plans for wind and solar energy and energy efficiency. In most cases these are combined with policies specifically designed to create good quality jobs and to counter inequality. This Commentary describes job-creating, justice-promoting climate protection in Hawaii and Illinois. The following Commentary will describe such initiatives in California and evaluate the origins and effects of state-level Green New Deal-style initiatives overall.
In the 2007 Supreme Court case Massachusetts v. EPA, the state of Massachusetts successfully sued the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to require it to address greenhouse gas [GHG] pollution under the Clean Air Act. In this summer’s West Virginia v. Environmental Protection Agency case the Supreme Court forbade the EPA to implement just the kind of climate protection that followed from Massachusetts v. EPA. In a 6-3 decision, the Supreme Court held that the EPA did not have authority to implement emissions caps that would shift power generation from coal to renewables like wind and solar energy.
Passage of the Inflation Reduction Act reveals the power that can arise when the movements for worker protection, climate protection, and justice protection join forces. The fossil fuel industry, the Republican Party, conservative fossil-fuel Democrats, and right-wing...
People are acting at the local and state level to create jobs, reduce greenhouse gas pollution, and equalize transportation by expanding and electrifying public transit, electrifying cars and trucks, and making it safe to walk and bike. It’s a crucial part of building the Green New Deal from Below.
Workers and unions are among those who have the most to gain by climate protection that produces good jobs and greater equality. That’s why unions in the most diverse industries and occupations are creating their own Green New Deal-type programs in localities around the country. Here are some examples…
While Washington struggles over job and climate programs, unions around the country are making their own climate-protecting, justice-promoting jobs programs.
Protecting the climate requires rapidly reducing the extraction of fossil fuels. That’s a crucial part of the Green New Deal. While the federal government has done little so far to reduce fossil fuel production, people and governments all over the country are taking steps on their own to cut down the extraction of coal, oil, and gas.
Tired of waiting for the Green New Deal? Thousands of individuals and communities, cities, and states are taking climate protection into their own hands by creating their own “Green New Deal from Below.” This commentary portrays how people are using energy efficiency and conservation locally to realize the climate, jobs, and justice goals of the Green New Deal.