Is the Green New Deal the answer to all our nation’s problems? No. Can we just cast it aside and dismiss it as liberal drivel? No.

Climate change is a very real problem. Every report that comes out points to an ever-shortening time span facing us before we won’t be able to resolve the damage that has been done to our planet. Have you ever heard, “Don’t Mess with Mother Nature?” Well, we have been ignoring that advice for far too long, and the bill seems to be coming due.

So, the responsible approach is to come up with big, bold ideas that will put us on a better path, and quickly. We’ve seen continuing cycles of record wildfires, record hurricanes, record heat, cold, flooding, and drought. We have 500-year storms about every 18 months. Frankly, I find that scary. Scientists have done extensive research documenting the trends, and the related factors pointing to causes. Dr. Robert W. Haley, professor of internal medicine and director of the Division of Epidemiology at UT Southwestern Medical Center, became interested in climate science when mosquitoes started bringing West Nile virus to Texas, and he started researching the role climate played in their movement. He has compiled quite an array of data documenting the science.

As with Alcoholics Anonymous, step one in the process is admitting that we have a problem. Republicans seem to be unwilling to make that first step. The rest of us don’t want to wait while the arguments swirl before we start to find solutions. Fear mongering isn’t helpful. I remember the discussions of “death panels” when Obamacare was something to be despised. Now it’s the idea that airplanes and cows are under attack from the hated liberals. Or, in letting the perfect be the enemy of the good, the argument is that unless every nation participates, there’s no use in making the first step. But that’s what leaders do.

So…to the Green New Deal. It is a “resolution,” not a bill with defined steps. It’s more of a statement that we have an actual national emergency, and we need to put our best efforts forward to combat it. I’m reminded of a terrific Discovery Channel series from 2013, called “The Big Brain.” It was a reality competition, similar in format to “The Apprentice.” In it, teams of engineers and students came up with innovative solutions to various challenges and then competed to see which team’s answer worked better. Thinking outside the box, they brainstormed ingenious ideas.

Our nation is full of people with ingenious ideas. Let’s set them loose to come up with the smartest ideas possible to solve our impending climate crisis. If ancillary problems occur, we’ll need more great ideas to solve those as well. I am confident that we can do it. And our children and grandchildren will thank us.

  1. Kimmy Robinson says:

    Hi Jan – Addressing climate change and its effects is top of mind for young voters. It’s important to me, too! Please commit to favoring and advancing new infrastructure based on wind, solar and other sustainable energy sources over fossil fuel based infrastructure.

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