UK needs ‘Green New Deal’ to tackle ‘triple crunch’ of credit, oil price and climate crises On the first anniversary of Northern Rock falsely reassuring markets, and 75 years since President Roosevelt launched a New Deal to rescue the US from financial crisis, a new group of experts in finance, energy and the environment have come together to propose a ‘Green New Deal’ for the UK. And, as theGreen New Deal Group launch their proposals, new analysis suggests that from the end of July 2008 there is only 100 months, or less, to stabilise concentrations of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere before we hit a potential point of no return. The Green New Deal is a response to the credit crunch and wider energy and food crises, and to the lack of comprehensive, joined-up action from politicians.It calls for:
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Massive investment in renewable energy and wider environmental transformation in the UK, leading to, The creation of thousands of new green collar jobs Reining in reckless aspects of the finance sector – but making low-cost capital available to fund the UK’s green economic shift Building a new alliance between environmentalists, industry, agriculture, and unions to put theinterests of the real economy ahead of those of footloose finance
The global economy is facing a ‘triple crunch’: a combination of a credit-fuelled financial crisis, accelerating climate change and soaring energy prices underpinned by encroaching peak oil. It is increasingly clear that these three overlapping events threaten to develop into a perfect storm, the like of which has not been seensince the Great Depression, with potentially devastating consequences. As in past times of crises, disparate groups have come together to propose a new solution to an epochal challenge. The Green New Deal Group, drawing inspiration from the tone of President Roosevelt’s comprehensive response to the Great Depression, propose a modernised version, a ‘Green New Deal’ designed to power a renewablesrevolution, create thousands of green-collar jobs and rein in the distorting power of the finance sector while making more low-cost capital available for pressing priorities. Seventy-five years ago, Roosevelt’s courageous programme was implemented in an unprecedented ‘100-days of lawmaking’. And, as the Green New Deal Group launch their proposals, new analysis suggests that from the end of July2008 there is only 100 months, or less, to stabilise concentrations of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere before we hit a potential point of no return. This is the moment when the likelihood of irreversible changes in the climate becomes unacceptably high. The most serious global crisis since the Great Depression calls for serious reform the like of which has not, yet, been considered by politicians.This entails re-regulating finance and taxation plus a huge transformational programme aimed at substantially reducing the use of fossil fuels and, in the process, tackling the unemployment and decline in demand caused by the
credit crunch. It involves policies and new funding mechanisms that will reduce emissions and allow us to cope better with the coming energy shortages caused by peakoil. International in outlook, the Green New Deal requires action at local, national, regional and global levels. Focusing first on the specific needs of the UK, the Green New Deal outlines an interlocking programme of action that will require an ambitious legislative programme backed by a bold new alliance of industry, agriculture, labour and environmentalists. In the midst of unfolding globalcrises, as Parliament rises on 22 July, the Green New Deal Group challenges government to go away, do its homework, and come back in the Autumn with a comprehensive legislative programme equivalent to that implemented by Roosevelt 75 years ago – a ‘Green New Deal’. Proposal’s set out in the Group’s report include:
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Executing a bold new vision for a low-carbon energy...
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