An International Green New Deal is coming
Today we are witnessing a call to action on a planetary scale – from the world’s children and youth, Canada’s included. As the adults running the world continue consuming fossil fuels, children are leading the campaign against our species’ extinction. Success will depend on a global movement to follow their lead with an International Green New Deal. But each country has to take up the flag itself.
Several countries have proposed versions. In Europe, DiEM25 and the European Spring coalition are campaigning for “a detailed Green New Deal” to remake our economies along sustainable lines. In the UK, one campaign just froze the centre of London with this message, and in the US, the Sunrise Movement is pushing this concept into the 2020 election campaign. In Canada “The Leap” has proposed similar ideas.
These efforts have remained in silos; there’s no global framework for this global problem. But climate change has no borders. The US is the second-largest polluter in the world, but actually produces only 15% of global greenhouse emissions. One country alone can’t make it work.
We all need to support an International Green New Deal: a plan to raise $8tn – 5% of global GDP – each year, coordinate its investment in the transition to renewable energy and commit to providing climate protections on the basis of countries’ needs, not their means. That is a challenge, but to stay with the status quo is the world’s dead-end.
An International Green New Deal can be modelled on the Marshall plan after WW2. With financial assistance from the US, 16 countries rebuilt the infrastructure of a devastated continent. It worked, so we can do it too. We have to start by talking it up, injecting the idea into Canada’s coming election, and insist that every party take a position on the future of humanity. Ask each candidate their position on a Green New Deal. Insist.
Ross Andrews, J. Laframboise,
Marsh Shah, UQO students