Pelosi’s Actions on Climate Fall Woefully and Inexcusably Short of What We Need

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is facing criticism from some climate activists for failing to back a Green New Deal. Last week Pelosi announced the formation of a new Select Committee on the Climate Crisis, headed by long-standing Florida Congressmember Kathy Castor. But the committee is far weaker than what backers of a Green New Deal had envisioned. The committee will not have subpoena power or the power to draft legislation. We speak with Varshini Prakash, founder of the Sunrise Movement, a youth-led climate group that has occupied and lobbied at congressional offices, risking arrest to demand adoption of the Green New Deal and bold climate leadership.

AMY GOODMAN: House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is facing criticism from some climate activists for failing to back a Green New Deal. Last week, Pelosi announced the formation of a new Select Committee on the Climate Crisis, headed by long-standing Florida Congressmember Kathy Castor. But the committee is far weaker than what backers of a Green New Deal had envisioned. The committee will not have subpoena power or the power to draft legislation. One of the most prominent backers of the Green New Deal has been newly sworn-in New York Congressmember Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. On Sunday, she was interviewed on 60 Minutes by Anderson Cooper.

ANDERSON COOPER: You’re talking about zero carbon emissions, no use of fossil fuels, within 12 years?

REP. ALEXANDRIA OCASIOCORTEZ: That is the goal. It’s ambitious. And —

ANDERSON COOPER: How is that possible? Are you talking about everybody having to drive an electric car?

REP. ALEXANDRIA OCASIOCORTEZ: It’s going to require a lot of rapid change that we don’t even conceive as possible right now. What is the problem with trying to push our technological capacities to the furthest extent possible?

ANDERSON COOPER: This would require, though, raising taxes.

REP. ALEXANDRIA OCASIOCORTEZ: There’s an…

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