New Op-ed: Green New Deal—it’s here and it’s happening now
Green New Deal -- it's here and it's happening now
Berkeley California has banned gas stoves and grills in all new homes.
Let that be a warning to presidential wannabe Sen. Amy Klobuchar who dismissed the Green New Deal as merely “aspirational.”
Klobuchar and her fellow Democrats quickly embraced the Green New Deal, one of the nuttier ideas of socialist Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.
In the name of saving humanity from (alleged) catastrophic climate change, the Green New Deal would have the government ban gasoline, oil, natural gas and coal; replace air travel with trains; substitute kale salads for hamburgers; and provide housing, health care and jobs for everyone, including those “unwilling to work.”
After realizing that signing this societal suicide pact was tantamount to signing their own political death warrants, some of the “moderate” Democrats sought to dismiss the project as empty words.
But the latest dispatch from the front lines in Berkeley confirms the Green New Deal is not just happy talk. It’s not talk, and it’s not happy
It is the radical transformation of our society, and it’s already begun, now, not some time in the distant future.
The Berkeley City Council voted unanimously to require all new single-family homes, town homes and small apartment buildings to have electric infrastructure. No gas stoves, no gas grills, no gas water heaters.
This is the first step in the left’s long march to “decarbonize” the entire economy and Berkeley will pay an enforcement officer $274,000 a year to ensure everyone stays in line.
Berkeley adopted a Climate Action Plan in 2009 that aimed to reduce greenhouse gas emissions 33 percent by 2020 and 80 percent by 2050. The city committed to using 100 percent renewable electricity by 2035. Should the state of California adopt even more stringent building energy codes, Berkeley’s regulations will automatically update. So much for local rule.
With each new, more ambitious goal they set, the politicians scramble to clean up the mess they made with their previous schemes.
In 2007, at the urging of environmentalists the U.S. government required refiners to mix palm oil into diesel to make “renewable” biofuels. Now, palm oil is blamed for deforestation, child labor, species extinction, high greenhouse gas emissions and human rights violations.
The EPA also mandated adding ethanol to gasoline to make automobile fuel more environmentally friendly. Now environmentalists say ethanol actually produces more greenhouse gases than the gasoline it replaces.
In 2014, President Obama credited natural gas with helping the United States reduce “our total carbon pollution more than any other nation on Earth.” He added, “it’s the bridge fuel that can power our economy with less of the carbon pollution that causes climate change.”
Today, Berkeley doesn’t want you to use natural gas to grill a hot dog. Tomorrow, the green jihadis will try to turn off the 46 percent of California’s electricity generated by natural gas.
Already, the environmental fundamentalists seek to shut down pipelines that have been in place for over half a century and dynamite dams that provide water, power and food to millions.
Should they succeed, the immediate effect will be to increase the cost of energy and everything energy goes in to – virtually everything. Those least able to afford it will pay more to alleviate the guilty conscience of the rich.
There are several morals to this story.
1. The revolution always moves in a more radical direction. Banning coal power plants becomes banning backyard grills. What is considered radical and unthinkable today becomes tomorrow’s “moderate position.”
2. The “reasonable people” you might expect to keep things in check – those “mainstream liberals” – are incapable of criticizing or stopping anyone or anything to their left.
This is why Nancy Pelosi can’t speak out against Rep. Ilhan Omar’s blatant anti-Semitism and the Odd Squad runs the Democratic Party.
Remember that when Joe Biden or some other self-described moderate Democrat tells you they will moderate the Green New Deal. They can’t. They won’t.
What happens in Berkeley won’t stay in Berkeley.
If the Democrats take the White House, it will come to Washington, D.C. – and your backyard.
Have a happy barbeque while you still can!
--Curtis Ellis is Senior Policy Director for America First Policies.