Those goals are important substantively, because a major criticism of Biden’s plan was that its chief goal — achieving net-zero carbon emissions by 2050 — lacked a specific blueprint for getting there or near-term benchmarks. Perhaps just as crucial, task force members from both wings of the party said they had come away from the six-week process feeling hopeful about the future.
“You know, I think from the progressive wing of the party, when these task forces were first announced, there was a healthy degree of skepticism, right?” Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York, a co-chair of the climate task force, told me when we spoke on Capitol Hill last week. “You know, is this just for show or is this something real?”
She said she had been pleasantly surprised to find ideas from across the political spectrum discussed in good faith, and said she believed the task force had made “meaningful progress.”
Representative Don McEachin of Virginia, a Biden ally who was also on the task force, was more effusive.
“Anybody who is serious about preserving this wonderful jewel that we call the Earth will embrace this plan,” he said.
Notably, embracing the Green New Deal — an ambitious plan to tackle climate change and reshape the economy — was not one of the recommendations, despite the presence on the task force of its strong supporters like Ocasio-Cortez and Varshini Prakash, the executive director of the Sunrise Movement.
But as David Roberts of Vox notes in this excellent overview of a sweeping climate change plan that the House Select Committee on the Climate Crisis unveiled recently, significant portions of Democratic plans are starting to resemble the Green New Deal in important ways anyway. These plans have coalesced around clean energy standards, investment in renewable power and linking climate change to racial justice issues — all things the Biden task force also focused on.
Article source: https://www.nytimes.com/2020/07/07/us/politics/coronavirus-cases-fauci.html