Across much of North America and in other parts of the world, climate justice activists are warming to the idea of using the climate emergency to press for broad social transformation and a just transition as embodied in the Green New Deal.
Not only are Green New Deal measures the fastest way to decarbonize our economy, they’re also the fairest. That’s because they aim to create a more equitable and just society as we transition off dirty forms of energy, ensuring ecological sustainability, greater equality, social inclusion, and meaningful work for all.
Unfortunately, while some governments also warm to the ideas and policies in the Green New Deal, they continue to cling to international trade and investment rules that hold us all back from setting strong environmental and job-creation policies. We need to change this—and we can.
Many governments are afraid to introduce climate policies that might conflict with existing trade rules. Others are responding to growing support for climate action by investing in environmental and job-creation policies. However, these actions could be stymied by international trade rules.
What if we could use trade rules to expand—rather than restrict—public services? Or pressure our representatives to exit the specific trade deals that are keeping our government from investing in clean energy? What if the global economy could be reassembled to cooperate, rather than compete, in generating sustainable and responsible wealth and well-being for all?