Presidential hopeful Bernie Sanders has a plan for saving the plan – and you’re a part of it.
Sanders’ plan calls for moving 100% of U.S. electricity generation to renewable sources in just 11 years, by 2030, and then full decarbonization of the nation by 2050. As president, he will make sure that climate is a consideration in every government decision, from immigration to foreign policy.
The plan calls for eliminating fracking, a moratorium on nuclear energy, and a ban on importing or exporting fossil fuels.
Sanders claims his plan will created 20 million new jobs and not cost a penny. even though the price tag is more than $16 trillion, which is 75% of U.S. GDP and more than four times the annual U.S. budget. In fact, he reports that it will pay for itself in 15 years by raising taxes and fees on fossil fuel companies as well as selling renewable power created by new federal agencies, and income taxes paid by the 20 million new job holders. He also wants to cut $1 trillion from the military.
Some of those numbers are difficult to understand. If the U.S. is expected to eliminate fracking, ban imports and exports of fossil fuels, and rid the nation of fossil-fuel vehicles, how will fossil-fuel companies generate any revenue or profit on which to pay tax? And where will 20 million new job holders come from, with unemployment below 4%? If the military budget drops by $1 trillion over 15 years, that implies a 10% cut from current levels and then the budget remains at that low level, which seems implausible at best.
But Sanders is not deterred. His plan would direct the Environmental Protection Agency to ensure the United States cuts its greenhouse gas emissions 71% below 2017 levels by 2030, and assists non-China developing countries with financial aid to reduce their emissions 36% below 2017 levels by 2030.
It would restore U.S. leadership to carry out the goals of the Paris climate agreement, which Trump said the U.S. would formally leave in 2020. It commits $200 billion to the U.N. Green Climate Fund to help poorer nations develop cleanly and cope with wilder weather and rising seas. The fund initially received more than $10 billion in pledges, including $3 billion promised but not raised by the Obama administration. Trump refused to deliver two-thirds of the $3-billion promise made by his predecessor.