Thank you for your timely editorial describing the need for the Green New Deal and placing it with the historical context of Franklin Roosevelt’s New Deal (“Our View: We need big ideas like the Green New Deal,” Feb. 12).

The Green New Deal is a bold set of ideas for meeting the multiple challenges that climate change poses. However, it is not the “only proposal on the table.” In fact, as you point out, it “is more of a slogan than a program,” and currently a resolution.

In contrast, the Energy Innovation and Climate Dividend Act (H.R. 763), recently introduced in the U.S. House, addresses climate change head on. It would achieve two of the main goals set out by the Green New Deal: 1. Deep decarbonization of the U.S. economy at a rate sufficient to meet and exceed our Paris accord goals; and 2. The creation of more than 2 million jobs within 10 years, derived from the transition to a clean energy economy.

Under this carbon fee and dividend bill, all fossil fuel corporations would finally be paying a fee for the climate-altering pollution they cause. And we Americans would be getting, as dividends, monthly climate security checks from those pollution payments. The echo of FDR’s Social Security checks couldn’t be more appropriate.

A big plus for the Energy Innovation and Carbon Dividend Act is that it has bipartisan support, so necessary for its endurance. A similar Republican proposal is the Climate Leadership Council’s recent “Conservative Case for Carbon Dividends.” Both also include a border adjustment provision designed to protect U.S. business and extend carbon pricing worldwide. Also, Sen. Susan Collins’ CLEAR Act of 2009 involved carbon pricing and dividends.

U.S. Rep. Chellie Pingree has shown the way — she’s both a sponsor of the Green New Deal and a supporter of carbon fee and dividend. We need a big-tent, all-of-the-above approach to address climate change. We’re getting there.



Peter Garrett

coordinator, Citizens Climate Lobby in Maine


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