Energy & Environment

Gillibrand backs Green New Deal to fight climate change

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Potential Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.) said she supports the “Green New Deal” proposal to shift the nation to renewable energy to fight climate change.

The New York senator told the liberal Pod Save America podcast Tuesday that “there’s not a lot of details yet behind the Green New Deal” but “the platform of it is really exciting,” and she supports it in her possible presidential bid.

“The way I see a green economy is this: I think we need a moonshot. We need to tell the American people ‘we are going to have a green economy in the next 10 years, not because it’s easy, but because it’s hard, because it’s a measure of our innovation and effectiveness,’ ” she said.

{mosads}Gillibrand announced last week that she had established a formal presidential exploratory committee.

While supporters of the Green New Deal have different definitions of it, it would generally call for a rapid shift to 100 percent renewable energy for the nation’s electricity, as well as stopping fossil fuel use in transportation, industry and other sectors.

The idea has caught on in recent months as progressive firebrands like freshman Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) have boosted their profiles.

Gillibrand also said she wants to put a price on carbon, which would come through something like a carbon tax or cap-and-trade.

“If you really want to attack global climate change effectively, you should put a price on carbon, because what you’re doing is you’re incentivizing good behavior,” she said.

“You’re saying, ‘if you want to be a polluter, fair enough, but you’re going to have to pay a lot more, because you’re harming the rest of us, and we’re going to have to pay all those hospital bills.’ ”

Gillibrand had previously expressed support for carbon pricing, including endorsing the 2009 cap-and-trade bill in the Congress and backing carbon pricing last year as part of her Senate reelection campaign.

Tags Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Candidate Position Carbon finance Carbon tax Climate change Climate change policy Ecotax Global warming Green New Deal Kirsten Gillibrand Kirsten Gillibrand Legislatures Low-carbon economy Members of the United States Congress Person Career Person Party Quotation

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