Why Bernie? – Part 2: Climate Change

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The Alternative is first and foremost a music site, but it’s no secret that we are deeply political. Anyone who follows us on social media knows that, but I realized that although our site has been proudly supporting Bernie Sanders (and other progressive/leftist candidates) for many years, we have never written anything substantial about why it’s important or why we feel so passionately about it. It’s time we change that.

First off, I want to say that when it comes to politics, I can only speak for myself. When we first endorsed Bernie years ago all of our editors were in favor, and nothing has changed, but everyone has their own reasons for supporting Bernie. All I can tell you is what I know and what I believe. I do have degrees in political science, US history and law, but to be honest the majority of my political beliefs come from my life experience and what I’ve researched on my own.

I’m going to break my Bernie support down into different issues over a few articles. With each issue, I’ll explain quickly and clearly why the issue is important and why Bernie’s position is superior to the other presidential contenders. I started with Healthcare (which you can check out here), and now climate change.

Climate Change and Renewable Energy

Climate Change is without a doubt the most important campaign issue because it’s the only policy area (outside of maybe foreign policy) that could result in the end of the human species. Climate Change is a confirmed fact, and humans have the power to work to correct it or make things worse. As it stands, the polar ice caps are melting, the levels of pollution and carbon emissions are continuing to rise and we are seeing worse natural disasters (hurricanes, tornados, tsunamis, etc.) that are already leading to massive amounts of death and destruction around the world. Seems bad already, but we are just getting started.

As the climate continues to deteriorate certain entire areas of the globe will become entirely unlivable. Soon we will be seeing masses of climate refugees and famines that kill millions. Not to mention upcoming viruses and storms that will make coronavirus and Katrina look like child’s play.

If something massive isn’t done to limit and reverse this climate catastrophe, we will all pay a major price. Luckily, Bernie has a plan. Biden, not so much.

Bernie’s Position: Green New Deal

Almost everyone has heard of the “Green New Deal” by now, but when it comes to straight forward policy points, it gets a little more complicated to explain. This is especially true because right wing and corporate media has been pushing propaganda that it is a ban of airplanes and hamburgers and other ridiculous rumors.

Basically, Bernie’s Green New Deal plan is to mobilize America as if it was at war, but against climate change. When the entire power of the US government, economy, and workforce is united, there is no enemy it can not defeat, including the climate. So, what does this entail:

#1) Moving completely away from fossil fuels. Fossil fuels like oil and coal are very limited, very expensive, and very bad for the planet. Bernie wants to ban fracking (the most destructive way to collect fossil fuels) immediately, and then begin to transition away from the other fossil fuels. This will include training programs for workers in those field and an investment into energy collection that doesn’t destroy our planet like wind and solar power. Big investment into those areas could transform our economy and make us world leaders in clean energy.

#2) Investments in infrastructure to prepare for climate change. Bernie wants to rebuild America, the bridges, roads, and internet infrastructure across the country is crumbling and, in a time, when we may face additional climate disasters, repairing that vital infrastructure is a top priority.

#3) Rejoining the Paris Agreement and working with our allies and the UN to reduce climate damage worldwide. Climate change is a worldwide problem, and not just an American one. Therefore Bernie wants to use our standing in the world to force other nations to follow our example and take major steps toward ending the climate catastrophe.

#4) Hiring MILLIONS of Americans to good union jobs fighting against climate change and rebuilding the country. An anti-climate change army. Yeah, you heard that right, on top of saving the planet, this plan also creates tons of jobs. We are going to need a huge workforce to rebuild dunes, roads, bridges, prepare for floods, and build wind mills on top of many more tasks. These will be great jobs for a great cause.

As you can see, the elements of the Green New Deal, when broken down are pretty reasonable and obviously effective. Reducing emissions, investing in our country, working with allies, and hiring a workforce. I don’t see how any presidential contender could be against this much needed change to help save our planet, especially when the Green New Deal has been shown to be LESS EXPENSIVE than just letting the climate get worse and then repairing the damage. And yet, Bernie’s opponents disagree.

The Other Candidate’s Positions:

Trump doesn’t believe in climate change and is content to try hopelessly to seal the US borders while the world gets worse and worse and the tides rise to swallow up entire sections of major cities including New York, Miami, New Orleans, and more, not to mention all of the upcoming destruction from worse and worse natural disasters. By the time Trump finishes his second term, the climate could be destroyed beyond repair. So basically, that is a worst-case scenario.

Bernie’s last remaining corporate funded opponent, Joe Biden, claims to believe in climate change but has absolutely no plan to fight it. He wants to rejoin the very loose Paris Climate treaty and then uh, count on corporations to take climate control seriously? He has no plan. Sadly, Biden doesn’t have many real plans, and when it comes to climate he is embarrassingly bad. The Sunrise Organization recently ranked his climate plan a F- aka a complete failure. Sadly Joe Biden is almost as bad as Trump when it comes to climate.


Why Does It Matter?

I think when it comes to climate change, it is pretty obvious why it matters. I don’t want to die because of a climate catastrophe and neither do you. Plus, because I care about other people, I would also like to not live in a world where many other millions of people are ravaged by climate. If America doesn’t make serious moves to change this (aka a Green New Deal) that is the path we are headed for.

Make sure to support Bernie Sanders and tell everyone you know to vote for Bernie in your upcoming primary. Many states vote Tuesday and the rest vote later this Spring! Head to BernieSanders.com for more information.