Sanders bills aim for 10 million clean energy jobs

Sanders bills aim for 10 million clean energy jobs
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A pair of bills from Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersSanders draws thousands to rallies against Senate healthcare bill Sanders: FBI's investigation of wife won’t be a ‘distraction’ Are Democrats trying to pin the blame for their own sins on Russia? MORE (I-Vt.) seeks to create millions of new jobs in clean energy fields through tax changes and worker training.

Sanders, who is running for the Democratic presidential nomination, is proposing a permanent extension of tax incentives for wind and solar energy and $41 billion in new programs to help workers in the fossil fuel industry get new jobs.

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“Currently the United States wastes huge amounts of money providing corporate welfare to coal, oil and gas corporations that are destroying our planet,” Sanders said in a Tuesday statement. “It is time for us to invest in technologies that are cutting greenhouse gas emissions and in the long run will be more cost-effective.”

The legislation came the day after Sanders’s presidential campaign rolled out a plan to fight climate change that focuses on increasing the use of clean energy and the jobs in those fields, while restricting fossil fuels that cause climate change.

Sanders has long focused on climate change in his campaign and has labeled it as the most significant threat facing the country, even above terrorism.

While Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton has adopted some similar positions to Sanders, like opposing the Keystone XL oil pipeline, Sanders often points to the fact that he held those positions long before Clinton did.

The legislative package Sanders introduced Tuesday with Sens. Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.) and Ed Markey (D-Mass.) is aiming for 10 million new clean energy jobs by 2030.

“We have a moral responsibility to help working families in the fossil fuel industry find new jobs,” Sanders said in the statement. “We must act now to reenergize our manufacturing base, bolster our clean energy economy and protect the livelihoods of these workers and the communities they support.”