green new deal
Photo by Miriam Espacio on Unsplash
Climate change is the greatest challenge facing the next few generations of the human race. The more information one acquires the more daunting it feels. It is said that we have 12 years before climate change will cause irreversible damage to the bulk of life on this planet. It seems that every time we hear these predictions a year goes by and not enough has changed and our time keeps getting shorter. For example, almost every report that has been published in the last two years predicting how fast the ice will melt has been surpassed by a new report that states how much quicker it is currently receding. Climate deniers such as Trump are slowing down the progress that is dire for the survival of an inhabitable Earth. This has an impact on beautiful places like and around the Bay Area. It puts the beaches in San Francisco at risk, as well as the beaches in Marin.

The green new deal was presented to Congress a few weeks ago as a lofty goal encompassing many of the features that would benefit humans and the planet in the long run. Yet it is being challenged as “socialist”, liberal conspiracy or impossible to pay for. This is the argument that has been posed over and over whenever any environmental issues are presented. It is said that it is going to kill jobs it’s going to hurt the economy it’s impossible for the automakers to meet the mileage goals, on and on with the complaints.

Richard Wodehouse, West Coast Project Management Inc. Residential Construction Project Manager & Owner’s Representative, Marin CountyAs an owner’s representative and construction project manager I see first hand how retrofitting houses to be more energy efficient creates jobs. The big difference this time is that we do not have a choice,climate change has to be reversed and soon.

It is very worrisome that politically we have seen this trend in the world to elect right wing conservative, greedy and irresponsible politicians who choose to pick personal financial gain over public good or more broadly the good of the planet. Here in the United States, we have Trump, in Brazil, they have their new president that aims to develop more of the Amazon by cutting down forests. What is worrisome about this is how much damage will be created that is irreversible before they are voted out of the office by a more aware public. Hopefully here, in United States, we have enough people that have woken up to the reality of the climate change problem, and who will actively participate in the political process in 2020 elections.

The summary the goals of the green new deal are to curb and reverse climate change while at the same time meeting the needs of humans such as housing and livable wages. The green new deal is hoping to achieve the following goals which will create good high paying jobs in the work of lessening carbon emissions.

Power: Increase renewable Energy sources from the current 17% nationwide. (California has the goal of 100% renewable electricity by the year 2040)

Upgrading our electric power grids to be more efficient (the military has already vested $30 billion on Smart Grids). Increase research and development to stimulate industry to Green technologies. 22% of greenhouse gases are now produced by industry.

Buildings: There is a huge opportunity to create many jobs while upgrading buildings and homes to be more efficient and consume less Energy (California has set the goal of all new homes to be net zero carbon matters by the year 2030.) The green new deal also strives to make housing more affordable.

Transportation: Incentives to expand zero-emission vehicles both electric and hydrogen currently only about 2% of cars sold in the United States are electric.

Farming: There are great opportunities for sequestering carbon in the soil by changing our farming practices. There is great innovation in no-till farming and livestock management practices.

There are also goals for making more healthy food accessible to poor people. A Green New Deal is something our country has needed to address for a long time. Our planet will outlive us but the human race will not be able to survive on the planet much longer if we continue on this path of planetary destruction, over-consumption and wealth inequality.