A Green Jobs Deal

While polls say most people see climate change as a problem needing to be addressed, there are those who object to most every worthwhile proposal. More than a few say they believe the science is false and is a conspiracy to ruining our economy. This odd logic, of course, works to keep the oil, coal, and gas industries going to the last drop.

There are, however, practical issues about moving to more environmentally-friendly renewable energy sources that may cause disruptions to the status quo, such as eliminating coal mining and oil drilling jobs.

There are plans to address this. One is called The New Green Deal. It offers details on how to transition the nation and the world to renewable energy and also create plenty of jobs, too.

One important part would be a tax on carbon. Already the price of renewables has fallen significantly, but this would accelerate the process. The proceeds for such a tax would go to creating the infrastructure for a renewable energy economy, creating the new industries that would make this new infrastructure, creating the jobs that would build it.

In addition, the tax would offer rebates to every citizen so that everyone would be invested in the new renewable economy and would mitigate the higher energy costs during the transition.

Except for better batteries, the technology for a renewable energy economy is available right now. It’s the political will that is lacking, but that could change.

Making these plans more controversial are those who want them to also offer a Federal job guarantee mirroring what the original New Deal did with public works programs. Others want to fund the transition to clean energy with a financial transaction tax to curb the excesses of Wall Street and the banks.

Fighting climate change has growing support among younger Democrats. It is their future at stake. Climate change could be at the center of a winning 2020 run for the presidency.

Louis Harpster