The Green New Deal (GND) is pitched as a plan to save the planet from climate change; in reality, however, it is a progressive wishlist that would greatly expand the federal government’s powers at the expense of everyday Americans, while doing little for the environment.
The provisions that call for a guaranteed job for every American and healthcare for all do nothing to lower emissions or address climate change. Those are big government ambitions that are short on practical climate solutions.
Since its introduction, it has largely become the climate and environmental platform of many in the Democratic Party. President Biden claims to be more moderate and has been careful to not endorse the plan by name. Time will tell how moderate or beholden to the progressive wing of his party he will be.
Facts vs. Myths
- FACT: The GND would cost at least $51 trillion over the 10 years, and up to $93 trillion.
- MYTH: The GND is a climate policy.
- Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s (AOC) former Chief of Staff said, “it wasn’t originally a climate thing at all.”
- MYTH: The reduction in emissions under GND policies would be worth the damage it would impose on our economy and energy security.
Problems with the Green New Deal
- The GND is a progressive wishlist that fails the environment and hurts the economy.
- The GND calls for universal healthcare and guarantees every person a job. Those policies do nothing to address climate change and would come at a significant cost to American taxpayers and our personal freedom. They also further politicize the climate debate, seeking to pit Republicans and Democrats against each other.
- The Green New Deal’s regulatory impact alone would increase the average family’s energy costs by 30%.
- Cost estimates equal roughly $52,000-72,000 per household over the next decade.
- 100% renewable energy is not realistic.
- Climate policies should focus on reducing emissions, not supporting specific sources of energy. A more diverse energy portfolio that includes renewables, clean natural gas, hydrogen, and nuclear energy is the key to lower emissions in the future.
Mandates v. Markets
- Free markets unleash technological innovation and deliver more efficient energy.
- The United States is a global leader in emissions reductions because of technology innovation – mostly in natural gas, but also in energy efficiency and renewable energy.
- The private sector is already leading the way on emissions reductions.
- Many corporations like Walmart, Microsoft, Ford, and Caterpillar have established their own emission reductions goals.
How to Actually Improve the Climate
- Accelerate energy innovation in the U.S. by doubling R&D funding within the Department of Energy (DOE), its National Laboratories, and other agencies.
- Eliminate billions of dollars of already identified government waste to allow for investments into clean energy R&D.
- Allow the private sector to further compete in clean energy development by simplifying the tax code for companies across the board, including clean energy and energy innovation manufacturing companies.
- Reduce or remove regulatory barriers that get in the way of energy innovation and deployment.
- Environmental Impact Studies covered by the National Environmental Policy Act take an average of 4.5 years, which inflate the cost of projects.
- The Green New Deal is simply a progressive wishlist that calls for widespread government control over the economy and many of our industries. It would fall short of its promises to address climate change, while raising the cost of energy for most Americans.
- Time-tested principles that promote competition and the free-enterprise system would produce overall better results for both the environment and the economy.
- By trusting in the powers of the market and empowering innovators and entrepreneurs, we can continue to be the world leader in emission reductions while reducing government spending and building a stronger economy.
- Ultimately, technology innovation is best suited to tackle an issue like climate change. The Green New Deal would do the opposite, by inhibiting innovation and making progress slower and more expensive for everyone. Smart climate policy supports and empowers innovators – it doesn’t stifle them.