The Green New Deal: Necessary for a safe Environment?

 

Climate change has kept most of the world on the edge of their seats, creating abnormal weather patterns, animals acting strange, and smaller coastlines. It seems undeniable, right? With all this evidence piling up and all. Unfortunately not, as people still find ways to say “there’s no such thing as global warming!” to which you’ll hear a growing sea of people shout back “it’s called ‘climate change’!”

The polar ice caps have been melting at an increasingly alarming rate. According to NASA’s Climate change page, where they’ve recorded the ice caps in their summer months when they annually reach their “minimum” before the winter cold builds it up again, the size of the ice caps from 1979 to 2018 went from about 6.5 millions of km squared to a measly 4.1 millions of km squared with a scarry dip in 2012 at 2.8 millions  of km squared. Why is this happening?

Because of the “greenhouse effect,” which is basically that the earth is a giant greenhouse that is covered in a nice warm coating called the atmosphere. It draws in the heat from the sun and cools it to a livable temperature for our very flammable and easily overheated bodies. It helps keep this life saving heat close to earth’s surface so that we don’t freeze to death in Space’s icy cold wasteland. Great, right? Humans don’t freeze OR burn to death, thanks to our nice earth blanket. And how do we repay it?

We pump it full of smoke and gas from cars and factories and other everyday commodities we’ve grown so fond of. These gases can’t be broken down chemically or physically and they get trapped right inside the atmosphere. Since the atmosphere is all backed up, it can’t regulate heat properly, trapping it inside, making it too hot, like a greenhouse. The planet thrived at exactly the right conditions for billions of years, creating life from basically nothing, providing food and  resources for its patrons to not only survive, but to thrive. And let’s face it, no one likes change, especially something that’s done it the same way for as long as Earth has. Hence all the horrible effects of climate change.

The ice caps melting is not the only terrifying impact on the sea, though. The coral all over the world is experiencing a mass bleaching which happens when coral turns a bright white. It occurs when the water becomes too warm for its liking and it expels the algae living on it, causing it to starve. In 2005, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration for the U.S. Department of Commerce (NOAA), there was a mass bleaching resulting in the death of half its coral reefs, when looked at through a thermal recorder, it showed a greater increase in the temperature than the last twenty years combined. National Geographic reporter Lauren E. James explains that thirty percent of the Great Barrier Reef died due to bleaching in 2016 and another twenty percent in 2017 resulting in it, too, losing half its coral population.

Healthy coral, says NOAA, is responsible for managing twenty five percent of the ocean’s fish as they eat off of it, hunt, mate, find shelter, and raise their guppies within its ecosystem. If coral dies out, twenty five percent of the fish population will be homeless, starving, and too scared or hunted too much to reproduce. Twenty five percent of fish will die with its coral. Then its predators will go too, and their predators and so on, all the way to the sharks who will live forever, as they outlived many others.

So why should this matter to us land lovers? Nothing, that is if you have a leak proof, underground bunker with enough resources for you and all your loved ones. If the small fish go, islanders and residents of coastal towns who depend on them for jobs and food will have neither. They’ll starve or move inland. There will be less and less resources to go around. Clean drinking water is already dwindling. The lack of rain and water is drying up crops, rivers, lakes, ect. Little resources mean people will start making rash decisions.

The impending apocalypse. Not one caused by aliens or zombies or nuclear weapons (although that might take us out, too) but one created from pure ignorance and narcissism. We have to change or we’re looking down a path of destruction, turmoil, war, and death.

The Green New Deal can be that change. Proposed by many green party candidates over the years, and is now being pushed and publicized by Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Sen. Ed Markey, it claims to drastically improve the economy while converting the old economy into a “new, sustainable economy that is environmentally sound, economically viable and socially responsible,” says Green Party Us.

They plan on enacting an emergency reworking of the country in order to fix the effects of climate change over the years. This involves transitioning to 100% clean renewable energy by 2030, and investing in public transit, sustainable (regenerative) agriculture, conservation and restoration of critical infrastructure, including ecosystems, and in doing so, creating 20 million new jobs based off of these changes.

By removing non-clean energy (natural gas, biomass, nuclear power and “clean coal”), along with the resources and funds that go into them, the state of the atmosphere will greatly improve. By reworking the system to be in favor of the earth rather than against, jobs will be created, communities will thrive, the taxpayers’ dollar will go to something worth wild. Since oil won’t be a concern anymore, the millions of dollars fed into the military for protecting it can be transferred into building a clean powered society. They also plan on providing anyone who loses their job due to the changes wages until they can get new jobs in this updated way of life.

They want to implement a plan based on a community, worker and public ownership, and democratic control of energy systems, “rather than maximizing profits for energy corporations, banks and hedge funds”.

There are flaws in their system, its true, but it could be a huge, monumental step in the right direction for the change the world needs in order to survive the next few hundred years and avoid the apocalypse that may soon be the demise of the human race.