After years of delay and denial from the highest levels of government, the Biden administration has promised to confront the existential threat of the climate crisis with trillions of dollars in “green” investment. Such a massive infusion of spending on energy, transit, housing, and more would reshape the entire physical landscape of the country.
But will it live up to the expectations of the climate movement that helped elect Biden? The Green New Deal is a vision of a ten-year mobilization and just transition to achieve a zero-emissions economy with millions of new high-paying, union jobs. Biden won election on the promise of being both the greenest president in history and the most pro-union. However, many of the major companies likely to benefit from federal funding for green infrastructure, like Tesla and Uber, are also busting unions and lobbying heavily to avoid labor laws to improve conditions for gig workers. That’s a far cry from the shared prosperity proposed in Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s Green New Deal resolution, and an enormous challenge to getting a critical mass of American workers to actively support the policies necessary to survive the climate crisis. Without political intervention, a green transition could further immiserate workers, making masses of people even more precarious while billionaire wealth surges.
Read more here: To Win a Green New Deal, Pass the PRO Act | Dissent Magazine