>> KEVIN YOUNG: Good evening and welcome I’m Kevin Young and I teach in the UMass History Department. I’d like to acknowledge that UMass Amherst stands on Nonotuck land Most of us, wherever we are, are inhabiting land wrongfully taken from Indigenous peoples And we have a responsibility to address the historic and ongoing crimes against their nations. As some of this year’s events emphasize, the struggle for Indigenous rights is intimately tied to the struggle for climate justice I’d also like to acknowledge the historic and ongoing role of UMass and our other institutions in contributing to ecological destruction, particularly in the form of greenhouse gas emissions, and to invite us all to work to reduce our institution’s ecological footprints and pursue redress for the victims Tonight it’s my pleasure to introduce the panel, “Environmental Policy in Historical Perspective.” This is part of the department of history’s biennial Feinberg Family Lecture Series which is made possible by the generosity of Kenneth R. Feinberg, a 1967 department alumnus and his friends and family Each iteration of this series focuses on a topic of clear and compelling concern to society and invites audiences to consider historical context, analysis, and experience to better understand the topic at hand This year’s series is titled “Planet on a Precipice: Histories and Futures of the Environmental Emergency.” It seeks to deepen our understanding of the environmental emergency through historical analysis and, in so doing, help us envision constructive paths forward For more information about the series, to register for future events, including next Wednesday’s event on extractivism, geology and power, and for the list of our more than 4 dozen community and university co-sponsors, please see the series website If you are watching on Zoom, you can look at the chat box for information on how to turn on live closed captioning or to listen to tonight’s event in Spanish Following the event, I would like you to join us for 25-minute discussion groups hosted by volunteers from our community, including community organizers, librarians from Forbes Library, graduate students, and faculty We are excited to announce DREAMING THE FUTURE, a zine about the relationship with the Earth and imagining possible climate futures. This sign is created by and for young people and is organized with the Forbes, Lily, and Jones libraries If you’re 18 or younger please look at the chat box. Submissions are due January 1 and on February 1 we’ll publish the zine in conjunction with the Feinberg event, “Young People Fighting for Climate Change.” Now it’s my honor to introduce our moderator for the panel, Ashwin Ravikumar. He teaches courses on environmental justice and politics

at Amherst College >> ASHWIN RAVIKUMAR: Good evening, everyone. My fame is Ashwin Ravikumar and I teach in the Amherst College Environmental Studies department. With Joe Biden’s victory, we have all been able to relish a gasp of air in what has been a suffocating era in US politics. As someone concerned with climate change, I have felt a mix of conflicting feelings. On the one hand, it’s heartening that Biden has committed $2 trillion to addressing climate change On the other hand, the plan doesn’t involve any discussion of reducing excessive consumption and industrial activity, nor is it really adequate to what is required to avert a horrifying century of climate violence, and Biden’s track record suggests only a sustained movement will push his administration to take meaningful actions, especially with the GOP in Congress On the one hand, it’s beyond inspiring that the Movement for Black Lives has created at political possibility of defunding the police and reallocating resources towards programs that keep communities safe and create space for the most oppressed peoples in the US to participate in envisioning and building a new economy that is actually compatible with a livable planet On the other hand, the Democratic Party has moved quickly to distance itself from this movement, and even to blame it for how close the election was A very curious reading of exit poll tea leaves, while seemingly ignoring the fact that centrist liberalism did pretty darn badly at the polls in 2016 before Defund the Police was a slogan But despite this, we in the climate justice movement know climate justice is fundamentally about racial justice, and we can’t have climate justice without repair and resources for Black communities and movements led by Indigenous people. On the one hand, it’s hopeful Biden’s administration might put international cooperation in some forms back on the table by putting the US back into the global Paris Climate Agreement, for example. On the other hand, the Biden Administration has repeatedly put the US military close to the center of its thinking about climate chang, as if a woke “green war” is what we need rather than an absolute reduction of the US murder machine as well as climate solidarity and repair To navigate these contradictions we need clarity of analysis and a political strategy that builds with the movements and organization already on the front lines This is to say, that I’m delighted to moderate this panel of speakers We have Bill McKibben, author of 350.org, who will speak about the context of the climate emergency and what the election may mean for radical demands on the movement Bob Pollin, an economist at UMass will speak about the political economy of climate change and bridge this with the context of action in the United States. Eve Vogel, a political and environmental geographer at the UMass Institute for Scientific Research will talk about the original New Deal and policies that led to victories, with key lessons for the present And Thea Riofrancos, a political scientist at Providence College will speak about how greening the US economy will impact global change. I think challenging us to fundamentally transform our economy rather than replacing a fossil fuel empire with a solar and wind empire is an understanding we badly need, if we are to build the kind of international coalition necessary to bring about genuine climate justice So we have mass movements, an understanding of history and how political power works and a compassionate commitment to international solidarity, sign me up. I hope this conversation will sharpen our analysis of the present moment, provide us with inspiration concerning actionable steps we can take to plug into movements The political moment before us is limited, but also tremendous Not even industry can predict what the consequences of our advocacy at local, state and federal levels will be. As the Democrats, the Biden Administration, and other power brokers contemplate how to ensure long-term political survival, we have a chance to show them how international climate justice is the only way to do that. Thank you, and let’s begin After the initial presentations, we’ll host a virtual Q&A, taking questions through a forum we’re posting into the chat box. If you’re tuning into the live stream, you can find it in the comments there, too. If you’re on Zoom and prefer to submit through the Q&A function, please feel free. Bill, I will pass it to you >> BILL McKIBBEN: Thanks to everybody who asked me to be with you tonight. It’s a real pleasure for me not to hear myself speak but I’m very

much looking forward to hearing Bob and Thea and Eve because they’re really important thinkers Let me set a context, a starter course for what will be an excellent meal First thing to be said is, as always, you can’t talk about climate change without talking for a minute about where we are physically on the planet and where we are physically on the planet right now is with the 30th tropical storm of this Atlantic season. We’re deeper into the Greek alphabet than we’ve ever gone before We’re at the lowest sea ice ever recorded in the arctic for this time of year. Things are coming unglued and unglued fast and people who have been watching in 2020 have seen epic fires from Australia to Siberia to South America to California. We’ve seen all the hallmarks of a real climate emergency And we know — and this is important context for all discussion about what kind of change we need to make — we know that physics is, in the end, in charge here and that physics tells us that we have a very short period of time in which to make big changes That shortness of time distinguishes this from other political problems that we deal with This one is time limited. If we don’t solve it soon, we do not solve it IPCC 2018 gave us our best guess. They said if we haven’t made fundamental transformations by 2030 which they defined as cutting emissions in half globally, then the chances of ever meeting the Paris climate targets go by the board So, the second context, of course, is the election, which didn’t go as well as many of us had hoped and worked to see that it would happen But assume, for the moment, that our president proves as inept at pulling off his attempt at a coup as he’s been at almost every other task to which he’s devoted himself these past years and assume that we get a President Biden on January 20. Let’s even assume for the time being — because we’ve got to hope we can because we’ve got to do a lot of work, that we manage to win two senate seats in Georgia There are superb candidates, including the guy in the pulpit of the church, Dr King’s old church, which makes for me this very resonant election in American history But let’s assume we win that and manage to take by the narrowest of margins the senate. Even then I think the outcome of the election is pretty clear that we will not be having the massive $2 trillion Green New Deal plan that Joe Biden campaigned on I think it’s clear there are weak links within the Democratic coalition, the weakest of them, Joe Manchin, the senator from West Virginia who announced this week that he would not vote for filibuster reform or expanding the court or much of anything else So we’re going to have to figure out how to get a lot done without, at least for the moment, being able to do the very central things that Biden campaigned on It’s a great shame we’re in this position because in this last election the Democrats were far more outspoken about climate change than any major political party has ever been in our political history. Joe Biden in the last debate walked up and grasped the third rail of climate policy. He said we have to transition away from the oil industry and people tried to tell him it was a gaffe, but his campaign ran in the closing week of the campaign five big ads around climate change. Clearly they decided this issue worked for them, not against them, and I think that they’re right. They managed to carry, despite that statement, Pennsylvania and Colorado and New Mexico and other oil parts of the country This is another way of saying that we’re at a watershed moment in public opinion, finally. The accumulated weight of all those disasters around the world, the knowledge,

spreading quickly through the population, that the price of solar power or wind power has dropped 90% in the last decade and is now the cheapest way to generate power And, the building of a vast climate movement over the last decade here and around the world, has been enough to alter the political equation in lots of ways, and in that characterization, the senate becomes a kind of last redoubt of the fossil fuel industry, from which they’ll be able to thwart a lot of action, at least for the moment, but not all action In fact, I think there’s a big scope for the new administration to accomplish a lot of things that will be very significant, but they’re going to take some help from the climate movement and they’re going to take some willingness and ability to exploit them, when they do it So, what am I talking about? I’m talking about the vast number of changes that we can make to regulation and policy that will add up to a serious thumb on the scale that will make it harder for big oil to keep doing what it wants to do. And the good news is that climate activists and the climate movement are very, very sophisticated, in a way that they have not been in the past. There are now thousands upon thousands of really talented people working on these issues Some of them policy people, and some of them political people. And I will give particular pride of place to an UMass Amherst grad, who, I think, may be one of the most important political players in this country the years to come, my old friend Varshini Prakash, who led the effort to divest UMass from fossil fuel, the successful effort early on, and now is head of the Sunrise Movement, who is a serious power broker in this fight. We’re just beginning to see their ability to do things like influence appointments. They’ve made it clear, for instance, that Ernie Moniz, the former Obama Secretary of Energy will not be the Secretary of Energy in the new administration But they have come up with a long list of things that Biden can do without Mitch McConnell getting in the way, that will be important. And I want to highlight one particular area, because I think it’s going to be utterly critical. And that’s what they can do to influence the financial system You know, we have an almost reflexive belief that political power and political change only comes through political systems, and that’s a very odd position for people on the left who should have a much more rich understanding of the fact that capitalism is the problem here, and at the heart of capitalism is big capital, that is, banks and asset managers and insurance companies And they are possible to get them moving into entirely new directions We’ve watched over the last few years in the UK as one guy — Mark Carney, the governor of the Bank of England — managed to make it necessary for banks and insurance companies to start figuring in climate risk and the risk of stranded assets. And we’ve begun to see the way that that plays out. We’ve also begun to see what movements can do in this regard We launched this Stop The Money Pipeline campaign about a year ago. I began, 2020 — it’s so long ago I can’t believe it was in 2020 — but, in January, getting arrested at the Chase Bank nearest the capitol in D.C., because Chase is the biggest funder of fossil fuels in the world. A quarter trillion dollars since the Paris Accords. Forget Trump, these guys are sabotaging day and night, with much more skill than Trump brought to the process, our global efforts to get anything done. We’ve kept the pressure up, though campaigning this kind is hard during the pandemic And, a few weeks ago Chase felt compelled to announce that all their financial activities would be “Paris-compliant.” An airy phrase, that I think will require some people to spend more nights in jail in order to fully flesh out what it might mean But the pressure is on, and this is a place where we can move a kind of pincer movement,

if Elizabeth Warren is Secretary of the Treasury, or Sara Bloom Raskin is governor of the fed, or chair of the SEC or something like that. It is able to put forward the kind of regulations that we need that force quick and thorough accounting of exposure to carbon risk, and new rules about steering banks away from that kind of risk. Well, that will make a huge difference So I could go on listing for a very long time, all the sort of similar tweaks and things around the edges and the margins that we’re going to be able to do that could have big impact And I’m glad of that. I don’t know whether they’ll have an impact on the scale we need in the time we need. And no one does. We’re in — playing in uncharted territory here. There are, as you know, scientists who think we may have waited too long at this point. Although the best science seems to indicate that we have a narrow window — albeit one that’s closing — it’s clear this decade is the last decade I think with real leverage with what the final temperature of the planet turns out to be, and so we have to do everything that we possibly can and we can’t therefore just sit back and say well, Mitch McConnell is in charge of the Senate, there’s nothing we can do There’s a lot we can do and will do And I will end by saying, we should not forget that we have brothers and sisters working on every corner of the world on this fight, many of them way in advance of what’s happening in the US. My great fortune is I get to work with them all the time, every day, about things. And I’m reminded just of the depth and history of this fight. Tuesday was the 25th anniversary of the murder of Ken Saro-Wiwa in Nigeria, a murder that was by all intents and purposes carried out by Shell Oil. It’s just a reminder of how long people have been putting themselves on the line to slow down this juggernaut, and now it’s our turn, and we need to get it done >> ASHWIN RAVIKUMAR: Thank you so much, Bill, for those remarks. I’m going to be keeping introductions and bios of the speakers brief in the interest of time but you can find out more about them through links that have been dropped in the chat Next up, we’ll hear from Bob Pollin, an economist at UMass. Take it away >> ROBERT POLLIN: Thanks very much and thank you very much for having me and being on this panel with such excellent people, Bill, Thea, Eve So I’d like to sketch out a program for a global Green New Deal, what it would entail, and then I want to bring it down to our current situation in the US, with some details in particular about Pennsylvania. You’ll see why So with the notion of a Green New Deal, there’s a lot of definitions and I want to give a basic simple meaning to the concept as I understand it Bill referred to the intergovernmental panel on climate change, the IPCC target which is a roughly 50% reduction in emissions by 2030, which is nine years from now. And zero emissions 29 years from now. So as I understood it, the Green New Deal is a project to hit those targets or maybe do better but at least hit those emission targets. And to accomplish this in a way that also expands job opportunities, raises living standards, mass living standards and is consistent with reducing poverty and raising well-being throughout the world. That’s what I mean by a global Green New Deal Of course the New Deal is supposed to evoke the 1930s New Deal that was an egalitarian project to get out of the Depression. This is an egalitarian project to get out of the most fundamental crisis that the globe has faced, an existential crisis. And also, it so happens to get us out of the recession that we’re in now, which would mean a green recovery So the centerpiece of the global Green New Deal as I understand it, is the transformation of the global energy system. It’s not only that,

but that’s the centerpiece because roughly 70% of all emissions come from burning oil, coal, and natural gas to produce energy. So in the work I’ve done with my co-authors, we’ve estimated the costs, the investment costs — and it’s not just the costs but I’ll first talk about the cost — of hitting that target, of a 50% reduction in 10 years and a net zero emissions global economy in 30 years. And that’s about 2.5% of global GDP. Of global economic activity, 2.5% It’s a lot of money. It’s about, you know, initially somewhere in the range of $2 trillion in investing in two things, two big things: energy efficiency, and solar and wind, clean renewable energy sources which will supplant our existing fossil fuel dominant system where 80%, 85% of all energy now is generated by fossil fuels So that’s the basic program, and this is an international program. So when we talk about international solidarity — and when we have time we’ll talk about how to pay for it — but I would argue the countries responsible for having generated the climate crisis should also be paying for most of the solution to the climate crisis, including investing in developing economies It’s not a program based on government spending It’s a program that entails combinations of public and private. There’s a lot of investments in energy co-ops, especially in Western Europe now but other places as well One place you might not know about is Alaska There’s some very interesting developments there In fact, if we were to say the solution is public ownership of energy assets when we’ve already solved the problem because 90% of the world’s fossil fuel assets are owned, already, today by public enterprises, so that’s not a solution in and of itself Now this project of investing to transform our energy system will be a major source of jobs, of job creation. And that’s a big part of why I say the Green New Deal, by transforming our energy system, will also be a source of opportunity, of expanding opportunity. Of jobs. Of good jobs So it’s jobs because we’re spending money to build a new energy system It’s jobs for people in solar energy, it’s jobs for people in energy efficiency. It’s jobs for accountants. It’s jobs for lawyers. It’s jobs for solar engineers. It’s jobs for secretaries A recent paper that I put out with co-authors just a few weeks ago, estimates in the US, on average, today to 2050, we would generate about four million jobs per year in the US and about 160 million jobs globally at 2.5% of GDP. Now, when we build out the green energy system, that means the fossil fuel energy system transforms down to zero. And that has to happen. Absolutely, as Bill said. There’s no choice, it has to happen There’s no other way to stabilize the climate Now, the contraction of the fossil fuel global industry is going to mean job losses, and it’s going to create harm to communities that are dependent right now on fossil fuels. So what’s the solution there? Very straightforward, we have to invest in just transition, for the workers and their communities that are currently dependent on fossil fuels. Saving the planet means treating these people and communities fairly, otherwise the level of resistance to transition is going to be too big to overcome. The good news is, it’s not hard to do this. It’s easy to do this. The paper I just cited, you can look at it if you want, it’s part of the America Zero Action Plan Study, what we estimate in the US, and if we take coal, oil, natural gas and ancillary industries, we’re looking at job losses in the range of 25,000 per year, on average. That’s after taking account of attrition

by voluntary retirement. The number of people who are going to lose their jobs and are going to need to be getting new jobs, about 25,000 a year Remember the number I said for job creation through clean energy is four million. Four million versus 25,000. All 25,000 people need to have a guarantee of a new job, a new job that pays them just as much, need to be retrained if necessary, and relocated. And we’ve estimated the costs of that. Generous numbers for all of that. $2-$3 billion a year over the 2050 period, we’re looking at one one hundredth of one percent of GDP for a very generous just transition Now let me bring it down to Pennsylvania for a minute. Pennsylvania was mentioned in the campaign, and as Bill mentioned, Joe Biden said we’re going to transition out of fossil fuels but then he also said no, no, no, we’ll never get rid of fracking in Pennsylvania, and that became a big issue. Let me just describe a little bit about the fracking industry in Pennsylvania relative to the opportunities from clean energy. If we were to invest 2.5% of activity, GDP in Pennsylvania in clean energy, we estimate and we’ve put out a study on that a few weeks ago also, about 175,000 jobs per year We also estimate that if you wind down fossil fuels, fracking and everything and coal and oil in Pennsylvania, we’re looking at, at most, 1,800 jobs lost per year, versus 175,000 jobs created per year. Again, all 1800 people deserve a just transition. It’s part of the project But to find good jobs and help people relocate as needed, 1800 people is nothing. It’s simply a matter of will. And so it was unfortunate that Biden couldn’t say in the debate and elsewhere “yes, we’re going to wind down fossil fuels, yes we’re going to wind down fracking in Pennsylvania because that’s what we need to do to save the planet. But we’re going to take care of each and every person who is facing job displacement as a result of this.” The fracking industry besides the — it has created economic benefits for a small number of people, but we all know it’s also created severe negative environmental impacts, such that a grand jury, just in June of this year, put out a report talking about the contamination of the water supply, the contamination of the air, the noise pollution, massive problems On top of everything else, another study came out that said property values in the communities where fracking is taking place, property values have fallen so much that school systems have lost about $1500 per pupil as a result of fracking So we have to tell this story that the transition to a Green New Deal, a green energy economy, is the thing we need to do to save the planet It will also be a project to expand jobs, expand opportunities, clean the environment, and improve schools. Thank you >> ASHWIN RAVIKUMAR: Thank you very much, Bob. Next up we’ll hear from Eve Vogel, a political and environmental geographer at the University of Massachusetts Institute for Social Science Research, I believe Take it away >> EVE VOGEL: Hi, everybody, thanks so much for having me. I’m really honored and excited to be part of this panel and part of this really important discussion So I am a geographer, which means I think visually, so I think I’m the only person in this group who has a PowerPoint. Is that going up? Do I get to see it? Thank you. Is this the original one? Is this the new one? Oh, this is okay So my role is to provide historical perspective

and maybe a bit of a cautionary tale. I’m going to talk about earlier efforts to create progressive, sustainable energy, and offer a few thoughts about some of their long-term legacies and lessons My main focus is on a few aspects of the original New Deal that were about green progressive renewable energy linked to environmental conservation At the end I’ll mention aspects of a more recent effort that might also be called a green energy policy effort: electrical restructuring. So go ahead and click forward So the New Deal was not just about jobs and infrastructure The 1920s and 1930s were decades when people were concerned about deforestation, devastating floods, dust storms, rural poverty, and the very survival of capitalism and democracy Among the most innovative responses were river valley authorities The TVA was the only official one ever created in the US but a more limited version was created in the Pacific Northwest on the Columbia River, the Bonneville Power Administration. I’m not going to describe these agencies in detail but give you detail to highlight legacies and lessons So I’m going to let people read, rather than reading at you, some of the ideas and goals behind these two agencies. [pause for reading PowerPoint slide] Is — so, it does very much echo what Bob was talking about in the vision about the Green New Deal So, federal hydropower through the TVA and the BPA were not only about tangible benefits but also about local democracy and ownership. So one of the key things about federal hydropower is that it’s always been sold preferentially to public and cooperative utilities. Those are the logos from Seattle City Light and Mason County Public Utility District both of which were created 100 to 85 years ago. They’re still with us today Since this is a panel on environmental policy, I wanted to show you a list of some of the policies and government agencies that made this all work. So next slide, please And I’m going to let you look at it rather than read it all to you. [pause for reading PowerPoint slide] And I wanted to emphasize, you’ll see here, it wasn’t just things that happened at the federal level, and it wasn’t just things that happened during the New Deal itself There were other things that happened at the local and state level that made those things possible So all of these still exist except for the Public Utility Holding Company Act So, Shaun, just so you know, I have animations going on so when I say click forward but don’t click twice until I tell you to go to the next slide All right. So, this is where I’m going to go slower here. What are the legacies of lessons and continuing tools from these agencies? Number one, the idea of building policies that can join environmental conservation, inclusive social benefits, strong government support, clean energy and local democratic ownership and participation with a Federal New Deal is not new. Anyone who says it’s un-American, that’s bunk This makes the history of how this constellation developed and played out over time incredibly informative for things about how to approach these things today Click forward but don’t change the slide. One more. Great The long-term result of ambitious programs like the TVA and BPA are mixed. Institutions and programs are shaped not only by their visions and initial leaders but later leadership, changing political economies, the limitations of politics and budgets during phases of implementation, by the fact that large-scale implementation of physical infrastructure and social and economic programs may have quite different impacts from small-scale ones. And that success depends on a whole host of other material and social change Also, what is progressive in one era, may not look as progressive in 30 or 50 or 90 years. So on that note, next note, although policymakers and planners of the New Deal thought they were inclusive and encompassing, there were things they missed. It wasn’t until decades later that

new interests arose successfully to fight for some of the people, places and species that paid the cost for their well-intentioned plans The TVA and BPA accelerated a massive buildup of large federal dams. It took decades before flood plain farmers in the Tennessee Valley and advocates for fish and river ecosystems in the Columbia Basin, among them Native Americans with treaty-reserved fishing rights, began to win back heavy losses they had suffered Fundamentally, the New Deal was also premised on resource development and increased consumption, and these ultimately had profound environmental impacts. The success of electrification also meant the promotion of millions of electrical appliances and gadgets all built with other, more distant natural resources, as well as more and more electricity, eventually prompting the TVA — once all the dam sites on the river were taken — to invest in massive coal plants and nuclear power and the BPA to get embroiled in its own nuclear power investment fiasco as well Many mobilized to fight the TVA and the BPA and the New Deal more broadly, because there were impacts on other agencies’ authorities and other companies’ profits. One of the ways they mobilized was through discourse. They portrayed these agencies as Communist and communism as evil The original New Deal was possible because there had been three years of depression before FDR was elected, and because there had been growing support for movements and initiatives even further to the left, including strong worker and Communist movements. FDR got voted in by a landslide in both 1932 and 1936 and Congress was overwhelmingly from his party. Even so, within a few years, there was growing resistance and some New Deal programs were struck down by the courts We still have many institutions created on and around the original New Deal that have progressive potential and could be made visible again and re-harnessed. In our quest for the new, we should be cautious of discarding the hard-won laws and institutions of old So this list includes things like state utility commissions, public and private ownership of electricity, FERC’s authority to regulate interstate transmission and wholesale electricity But for these to be progressive, people have to be paying attention to these seemingly boring agencies and their regulatory powers Commissions cannot be captured. The public has to select utility boards that care about progressive environmental and social aims, and big federal agencies need to be held accountable to progressive social and environmental interests Also, regulation that limits financial ownership, consolidation and obfuscation can make a real difference Besides Glass/Steagall, there was the Public Utility Holding Company Act It was weakened starting in 1978 and repealed with barely any media or public notice in 2005 Absent of PUHCA oversight, electric companies have gone through repeated mergers and sales since restructuring, grown into corporate Hydras with limited public or corporate accountability, dominated electric governance with dozens of voting subsidiaries and they are beginning to engage in widening corruption How much more time do I have? I don’t see a clock So go ahead to the next slide With that, I want to jump forward briefly to the era when PUHCA is undone, which was, ironically, another era of policy change inspired in part by a desire for greener energy: the era of electric restructuring. I’ve left the word deregulation here crossed out, because the impetus for electric restructuring was linked to the broader deregulatory movement across the world, a trend some put under the banner of neoliberalism How was electric restructuring about green energy? The idea was that by unbundling utilities from generation plants, and making generators compete for customers, we could get rid of the large, old, inefficient generation plants and end utilities’ dependence and insistence always on building more and more generation. New Englanders were leaders in making this connection So what you’re seeing on the right there’s a top of a picture of an old utility that has generation, transmission and distribution, and on the bottom, utilities of today that only have distribution, the big old electrical coal plant or nuclear plant is gone and we’ve had a proliferation of small, competitive generators,

mostly natural gas, that now are providing most of the energy to our transmission system as well as to end users. Next slide [Pause for reading] These are some of the laws and policies of electric restructuring And go ahead to the next. Keep going. Just actually scroll through all of these until we get to the bottom of number 4. Perfect So, the short version is, there were many of the same long-term problems and some different ones that arose with electric restructuring’s link to an effort to have green energy, just like the earlier wave. So even though ideologically it seems completely different, one is getting rid of government, the former was big government, in many ways both produce more consumption, more energy generation, and difficulty reining in those in power. Next I just want to end with an image of two maps Both of these are places where a competitive wholesale electric market to the south, California and New England, is linked to a large public hydropower producer to the north, Bonneville Power Administration and HydroQuebec In both places the southern region is looking at importing more and bringing that hydropower into a more marketized system, while the northern region is looking at it as ways to earn greater profit through the flexibility of selling when prices go up. And it’s an image of how these things are still with us, both eras, as well as their complex interface in the way that if we don’t see these interconnections the physical interconnections that link places like Boston to places like the James Bay or link Los Angeles to the Grand Coulee Dam, we don’t understand the wider implications of what we’re doing With that, I will stop, thanks so much >> ASHWIN RAVIKUMAR: Thank you so much, Eve. Next up we’re going to hear from Thea Riofrancos, who is a political scientist at Providence College. Go ahead, Thea >> THEA RIOFRANCOS: Thanks so much. Thanks so much for having me. This has been an amazing panel so far, and I’m really looking forward to the Q&A after I finish. So I’ll start by saying something that in a way reiterates something that Bob Pollin was starting his talk with, which is that, we usually think of the Green New Deal in purely domestic terms, especially in the US that’s the case, but if we want to achieve what I take to be the two core pillars of the Green New Deal, which are rapid decarbonization and socioeconomic equality, we have to understand the global dimensions of both of those pillars And what I’m going to argue today is that the Green New Deal can and must, from my perspective, be aligned with those principles of global climate justice The framework of global justice highlights two central facts about the climate emergency. The first is that it’s global. So this emergency is a planetary condition, and this is something that, at the outset of our panel, Bill McKibben laid out The second is the justice piece. Climate change is deeply structured by inequality, resulting in the fact that those who have contributed the least to emissions and other forms of environmental degradation are the most vulnerable to their devastating effects But I want to point out today that both the global and the justice are also very relevant, not just to the causes of the climate crisis, but also to the solutions to the climate crisis. In particular, the green technologies that we need to develop and massively deploy, so I’m talking about solar panels, wind turbines, lithium batteries, electric vehicles, among others, are produced via global supply chains. So that’s the global piece But as currently organized, these supply chains are sites of social and environmental injustice In what follows I’ll describe pretty quickly the basic contours of these supply chains with a focus on electric vehicles, and I’ll argue for how they might be reorganized in order to properly align with global justice Before I begin the piece on global supply chains, I’d like to speak briefly — because I feel remiss not to — about the current status of the Green New Deal politically. In the US and elsewhere It’s a cliche to say we’re in a moment of

unprecedented pandemic and economic crisis, and as Bill laid out the climate emergency has continued unabated, so we’re facing at least a triple crisis globally. The Green New Deal, I would say, despite these rapid and accelerating changes and the political context and public health and the economy, remains a salient framework, not just from my perspective but in the policy world. So across the world there are lots of calls for a green and economically just recovery To varying degrees, this approach informs policies being implemented in Europe under the banner of the Green Deal, in the UK on the banner of Build Back Better. In China, in South Korea, in Latin America, activists are calling for a new ecosocial pact to guide recovery from the pandemic and the economic crisis. And of course, here in the US Biden’s victory opens up the possibility — though not guarantee — of a green economic recovery I want to focus an element on his campaign platform that is relevant to what I’ll be talking about today. As has been pointed out, his platform calls for $2 trillion to electrify transit, construct a renewable grid, retrofit buildings, address environmental injustice and create millions of good jobs in the process Biden rejected the Green New Deal label, but it’s clear it influenced his proposals and perhaps we can talk more in the Q&A about how these proposals might fare in the likely situation of divided government. But for now I want to talk about his proposals in light of global supply chains, and specifically in light of the extractive frontiers of electric vehicle manufacturing So one of his key goals, as Biden stated on his website, is to revitalize the US auto industry by the mass consumption and production of electric vehicles. He envisions this occurring through a domestic supply chain, meaning that in his vision, the raw materials and manufacturing capacity to produce electric vehicles would reside here in the US, within the US borders Unfortunately or fortunately, depending on your perspective, my research shows this would be extremely challenging. The idea that we’ll have a fully domestic supply chain for electric vehicles any time soon. For decades, our industrial capacity has languished compared, of course, to China but also to Europe. We can rebuild this capacity but it would take time and I think it would take a more muscular and state-directed industrial policy than Biden would be comfortable with But what about the raw materials, which is a lot of what I’m going to focus on today Environmentalists in a number of environmental organizations around the world are increasingly concerned about the quantity of mining that will be required to produce the millions of electric vehicles expected to be sold globally over the next decade. That’s because electric vehicles — which some of you may be aware of, some of you, this may be new information — electric vehicles, while absolutely vital for reducing emissions in the transit sector, which is a third of all emissions in the US, requires enormous quantities of mined materials wrested from the Earth’s surface, 180 pounds of copper for wiring in an electric vehicle, plus lithium, nickel, graphite, cobalt for the battery, not to mention, of course, the toxic pollutants that are emitted during steel productions for the body of the car Here in the US we have domestic deposits of some of these materials, it’s unlikely the US will have enough capacity to fully self-supply any time soon. Extractive projects require years to garner financing, pass through environmental regulations, and enter in production Meanwhile, again, as Bill pointed out, the timeline for climate action demands that we move quickly to dramatically reduce emissions from transit as well as other sectors For the time being, then, the extractive inputs for green technologies are largely sourced from the global South, such as cobalt from the Democratic Republic of the Congo, nickel from Indonesia, and lithium and copper from Chile. The transition to electrified transit thus threatens to entrench the status quo of what some scholars call “unequal ecological exchange,” a system under which the Global South pays the socioecological cost for global capitalism. For a more concrete idea of what these socioecological costs are, I’ll zoom in for a moment on lithium batteries, which is what my research centers on at the moment Lithium batteries are a key component of electric vehicles, as well as for storing intermittent energy on grids that run on solar or wind

So as I just mentioned, Chile is one of the world’s top lithium producers In Chile, lithium is extracted from the beautiful salt flats of the Atacama desert, where I visited last year when I was conducting field work The process of Lithium extraction and evaporation has a very concerning impact on the water system in what is the second-driest place on Earth after Antarctica. The eighteen indigenous communities in the immediate zones of Lithium extraction have seen threats to their water access, and their collective rights to prior consultation In addition, workers at the Lithium installations face repressive, union-busting tactics We could tell similar stories for the production of solar panels and wind turbines, as well as for the other raw materials required to make electric vehicles and lithium batteries Now at this juncture of this context, I’d like to repose my question from the opening Given the social and environmental impacts of green technology supply chains, how can a Green New Deal be globally just? I’m going to present about three ways I think it can be globally just But as Eve and Bill were noting in terms of the broader politics of the New Deal and the Green New Deal, we need to fight for these. They’re not the way current policymakers are thinking about the Green New Deal, so it’s up to movements and civil societies to press for this approach So first and foremost we must advocate for electrified mass transit, walkability and cycling over individually-owned electric vehicles. The current consensus even amongst well-meaning climate advocates is that the only way forward is for everyone to own an electric vehicle I disagree with that, and think we are at a critical juncture where we should change the transit system in more transformative ways, and we should do so for two reasons. One is that it will make rapid decarbonization easier, and the second is that it requires fewer raw materials So regarding decarbonization, which is a key tenet of the Green New Deal as well as the global climate justice movement, the more cars that we have on the road, the harder it is to decarbonize the transit sector. It’s common sense but I’ll spell it out. Every single car needs to be swapped for an electric vehicle, that’s a lot of swapping to happen Also the more individual EVs on the road, the greater total demand for the renewable energy to power them, which means the more renewable energy capacity we’ll have to build in a short amount of time. So the more cars on the road, the harder to decarbonize the transit sector The more you have people using collective, shared, and mass transit, the easier it is to decarbonize Second and more germane to my research, the more we can move around in electric buses, walk or cycle, the fewer mined resources we use and the more people benefit from what we do pull out of the ground, and ditto for the more we can reuse and repair, rather than participate in the compulsive consumption of manufactured obsolescence So I’ll choose an example from my own work, which is that a lithium battery that may no longer be powerful enough to power or charge an electric bus would work beautifully to store energy on a renewable grid. So thinking about ways to reuse and repair rather than constantly manufacture and consume And then to end, we will, as I said a few moments ago, still need to import things. I don’t imagine US self-sufficiency. I don’t think it’s feasible in the near term, nor do I necessarily think it’s a good goal, though we can talk about that in Q&A So there will still to be economic exchange across borders, and what we need to import from elsewhere — whether it’s raw materials or other components since the US doesn’t produce a lot industrially right now, so we’ll probably have to import manufactured components as well — I would argue that supply chain justice should be a tenet of our trade policy. What does supply chain justice mean? It means thinking about the nodes of the globally dispersed attraction and manufacture of goods, and thinking about applying our principles of decarbonization and quality to each of those nodes. So thinking about the Green New Deal broadly as a way to structure trade So this would mean trade agreements that promote indigenous and workers’ rights, ecosystem integrity, and account for the carbon embodied in traded goods. Such trade policies could also facilitate technological transfers between the Global North and Global South as a way to kind of mitigate the deep inequality of the global economic system that Bob Pollin already spoke about To conclude, just now I’ve argued that the specifics of how we design and implement a Green New Deal in the United States have real-world implications for communities and

ecosystems around the world. Our everyday patterns of consumption reverberate on a planetary scale, just as the products of far-flung sites of extraction and production find their way into our homes, workplaces and neighborhoods It’s misleading then, to think of a US energy transition in domestic terms alone. As both the pandemic and climate crisis bring into sharp relief, material interdependency is our shared condition on this planet. Our response shouldn’t be to seek refuge in isolation or economic autarchy but rather, to think through how to enact the principles of democracy, equality and solidarity across unequal global supply chains. Thank you very much >> ASHWIN RAVIKUMAR: All right. Thank you so much, Thea. So we now have time for question-and-answer and as a reminder, you can submit your questions through a form which you can find in the Zoom chat and the YouTube and Facebook comments. If you’re in Zoom you’re welcome to submit your questions through the Q&A function. A student at Amherst College is helping me to curate these questions in real time I’m going to be synthesizing some of the questions we found so far that are thematically connected, and we can have a conversation about it. To kick things off, one question that came in — and this is from a student member of Sunrise and daughter of undocumented immigrants, “how would we prioritize our most hard-hit communities through this pandemic in the Green New Deal? How would we ensure every American — especially undocumented immigrants and formerly incarcerated people can reap the benefits of a Green New Deal?” And I suppose that’s for everybody but I could either call on people or if anyone wants to raise their hand. Does anyone feel inspired to take that? Bob? You’re muted >> ROBERT POLLIN: Thank you, I enjoyed listening to speakers. That was a great question. As I’m thinking about the vision of the Green New Deal which is consistent with what everybody else said Having a jobs program as central to the Green New Deal opens up a lot of possibilities. We’ve heard for decades, literally for decades, that you can protect the environment, you can get on a climate stabilization path, but it entails a massive tradeoff. The “New York Times” has run a story, you can be for the environment or you can be for jobs, choose one. Most people choose jobs The fact is, there is no tradeoff whatsoever so when we think about it as a jobs program, in fact I wrote a paper in 2008 during the last recession called “Green Recovery.” To think about it as a jobs program in the short term as well as a long-term sustainability program. And within that framework, yes, absolutely we have to target the people right now It should be a central focus. If you’re creating millions of jobs, focus on the jobs. For example, if we’re thinking about jobs in disadvantaged communities, a very easy way to think about that right now short term is retrofitting buildings Because retrofitting buildings creates job opportunities across a range of people’s skill levels, there’s a lot of entry-level jobs so that is just one way to think about it and, of course, we have to build into these job creation, labor union rights, and building in the role of an expanding and strengthening labor movement We have to have affirmative action so that job opportunities are there for people of color and women who are relatively disadvantaged in all of these sectors. And we have to have robust training programs to move people quickly into the jobs >> ASHWIN RAVIKUMAR: One thing that might be interesting is specifically what can people insist upon who are advocates to avoid replicating the ways that universal programs have been racist in the past,

have been withheld from Black communities and Indigenous communities in particular What does that look like? >> THEA RIOFRANCOS: I’ll say one thing to that and segue into what I was thinking when that question was asked. I co-sign everything Bob Pollin said. I think this is an opportunity to use massive public investment to sort of target historic injustices as we sort of build a new green economy. At this particular moment that’s a big task Because of the divided government thing and we get into strategies of how to advocate for that later in the conversation but I think that should be the vision. But I want to say one thing to what Ashwin just said and what I was originally going to say Biden promised in the $2 trillion plan that a couple of us eluded to is that 40% of the spending would target — I think he calls it disadvantaged communities. But we could say front-line, racialized, whatever term is preferable So one of the tasks of advocates and activists right now is to hold him to that. Because there’s not a lot of detail of how that targeting would happen and we know from the history of the US welfare state as Ashwin just said, not disinvestment in working class communities and communities of colors, there’s the bureaucratic difficulties of our means-tested welfare systems that make it hard for folks to get job training programs, all the stuff Bob was talking about. There’s under-enrollment even in existing programs So I think something different than the means-tested ornate approach, would be necessary and something much closer to direct investments, block grants for communities, making sure the money is going where it needs to go. So that’s on that front. But let me flip this question around. I love the question but the way I think of it is less like how can it be guaranteed that the communities that the question-asker listed be the first to benefit I would say it’s those communities that their historic mobilization and current mobilization that resulted in the Green New Deal in the first place. So I don’t think per se the community is just recipients passively of government spending but rather as protagonists that have been the key actors in making the Green New Deal the salient vibrant vision that it is. And so long as we continue even under our pandemic conditions like the dynamism of that social movement activism, I think that we’ll to some extent be able to keep the pressure on. Though of course the divided government question is key. But I want to frame those recipients not just as recipients but activists >> ASHWIN RAVIKUMAR: I’m glad you made that point because over the last six months I’ve had conversations with people who are part of the environmental movement about how to think about the movement for Black lives and one thing I keep coming back to is we can’t have political power that we need to transform the economy Without the deep participation of Black and Brown communities in the United States. So any move that is liberatory for oppressed peoples is inherently going to be part of any Green New Deal that works and is necessary to make it possible. I want to take one Of the things that you said about the types of agencies that can do this kind of work. There were a couple of questions that spoke to that that I’ll try to package together here. So one person wrote “having spent years trying to ‘be the change’ in the broken spaces of finance and energy, I say I wasted those good years. These systems even within the auspices of the Green New Deal are likely to be the same perpetrators of wealth and inequality unless ownership is taken into account.” So the question is, is there a way to reimagine and think about how to shift ownership in the economy, and, kind of relatedly, are there new agencies that might need to be created that are different from the old agencies? Is the EPA up to the task of managing a Green New Deal, of regulating these same industries that have historically captured it through regulatory capture, that have ended up having industry people run these agencies Or could we have something — and this was directed specifically to Eve — like the National Resources Planning Board but for the Green New Deal. Eve, do you want to start off taking on that set of questions? One piece of it was directed at you >> EVE VOGEL: In all these issues I’m hopeful and skeptical all at the same time because with a 70 to 100 year long time frame of how I think about

these things, you have both the progressive moments and the reactionary moments so, for example, rural electric co-opts that were this progressive thing in the ’30s and ’40s are now — one of the electric sectors in the United States that’s most resistant to renewable energy, energy efficiency and other programs because they are Based in rural America which has been politically conservative and because they are dependent on selling electricity for proceeds And similarly a lot of public power utilities are also very conservative and that’s why it’s important for people to pay attention to who the governing boards are of these boring institutions Because if you don’t guess what — they do just what that last questioner said which is they get dominated by the old power structures like anybody does The one thing I have that seen that’s been effective over time is institutional competition Some in the Pacific Northwest there’s a strong public power sector and there’s a really strong private investor-owned power sector. And because both are relatively vibrant, there’s been an ability for towns and counties to play them off against each other in ways that have made one or the other more accountable It’s not guaranteed in any way, it requires people to run campaigns to get municipal ownership but in the meantime the local investor-owned utility makes better promises. But that kind of institutional competition has turned out, at least from what I’ve seen, to be more effective than either all public or all private owners or systems. So this is not like an easy — I don’t think there’s an easy answer, I just don’t You have systems for people who get screwed later to challenge that system. And somehow systems of ongoing challenge need to be built in >> ASHWIN RAVIKUMAR: Totally. Does anyone else want to speak to either the question of how to transform ownership or if we need to transform who owns key sectors of the economy or the question of kind of government institutions. Do we need new agencies or different types of agencies to implement something like a Green New Deal? >> BILL McKIBBEN: I’d say just — it’s obviously unlikely that the Federal Government is going to do anything particularly radical in the next few years given its composition. But I have to say, it’s easier to imagine solely because The sums of money involved keep getting smaller Big oil is not really all that big anymore $300 billion and you could basically buy the US oil sector tomorrow. Exxon got passed by Next Era Energy, a Florida-based renewables company as the biggest market cap in the energy field The good news about that is not just that these completely venal and disgusting companies are beginning to falter, it’s that as they do, their political power falters to one extent or another, too, and that makes everything easier. That’s really one of the biggest reasons. When Naomi Klein and I started this divestment thing a decade ago, that was the plan To see if we could take away their social license The thing has gotten so big now, it’s constraining their access to capital and that’s good. That’s why I’m so hopeful that the SEC and Treasury and things may be able to accelerate that decline. Not just because of their — these guys — they don’t just pollute the air, they pollute our political system so thoroughly that it’s very hard for good ideas to get off the ground >> ASHWIN RAVIKUMAR: So there’s a set of questions that have been primarily directed at you, Thea, but there may be other people that want to comment on them and I’ll synthesize them But there’s a number of questions about, is there any hope with battery technology and waste management technology that we can reduce the adverse impacts of waste associated with

all the extraction we’ll need to electrify the economy and build up renewables in the economy? Or is it — put another spin on it — is it in fact necessary to degrow parts of the economy? And what are concrete policies that people could advocate for that would make the strategic degrowth in certain sectors more politically viable to avoid waste, pollution and exploitation that may come with more extraction for a green economy that’s the same as the current economy otherwise >> THEA RIOFRANCOS: Those are great questions There’s a technological question, an innovation question, like are there better ways to extract that are less environmentally harmful and there’s a question about like what is our overriding system and norms of consumption? How might we change those in ways that are politically palatable because whenever we start talking about consumption on the Left, the Right is telling us we’re trying to take away people’s stuff, their hamburgers, trucks, whatever it is I don’t mean to be dismissive because aside from the Fox News attacks which are ridiculous, consumption is a tricky question for the left On the one hand we know there are many people in the world that don’t consume enough. They don’t have enough money, don’t have the health care and the housing. So just having a blanket kind of statement that “we” should consume less is problematic. Especially when you’re speaking from a relatively affluent country in the global north and so it papers over the internal inequalities but also presumes a global “we.” So I wanted to clear that air because it’s tricky to talk about consumption but we should lean into those difficulties because we need to talk about consumption. Let me tackle the tech question first because it’s quicker and I’d love to hear what other people have to say about this Technologically, there are always better ways to extract. There’s no way to make extraction not have any environmental or social impacts I don’t think and when you’re talking about non-renewable resources, I don’t think that talking about sustainability is the most — I think is a kind of ideological mystification to talk about sustainable action of non-renewable resources. But there is better and worse And in part due to the same structures of the global economy and a long legacy of colonialism and imperialism, extractive firms go to the places with the weakest regulations, right? So one of the issues is that there isn’t regulatory will or capacity in the places where extraction occurs to actually subject firms to relatively forceful regulations that would force them to extract under using better technology. And if a firm doesn’t need to invest in new R&D, they’re not going to because it’s very expensive to develop new technology However, in lithium in particular, there are some that are less environmentally impactful but they’re not used at scale but we should be pushing them and holding lithium firms and other firms across the supply chain accountable to use better technologies and particular ones that use less water because that’s one of the biggest impacts of lithium extraction and brine deposits Back to consumption question, one of the ways I like to think about how we talk about consumption in our book “Planet to Win,” is we shift to an individual mode of consumption to modes of consumption that are public, shared and collective. Not just because they’re more environmentally rational, which I think they are, meaning that similar resources shared by more people is a more environmentally rational way to consume but also because they’re more joyous, they’re more fun, they occasion relationships that are more egalitarian and reciprocal And I think a lot of pathologies of our political and economic culture are not unrelated to the forms of individualized, privatized consumption that that sort of regime of consumption that we live under which I think creates subjectivities that are more available to the Right than to the Left I’ll put it that way to be brief but there are political implications of the way we consume and if we consume differently we might do different politics but it’s a bit of a chicken and egg in terms of the political movements that would be necessary to change our prevailing mode of consumption but I’ll pause there because I would love to hear other panelists speak >> ASHWIN RAVIKUMAR: Another thing I like that you said is we get to sell the program, “you get to

hang around in the park with your friends more.” >> THEA RIOFRANCOS: The right wing is so good at demonizing the left but people like being together and doing things together and sharing things. It’s not clear to me that humans are naturally competitive or atavistic at all. That should be part of our Green New Deal vision >> ASHWIN RAVIKUMAR: Public space rules and we should support a life that has a lot of it. Bob? >> ROBERT POLLIN: I will talk very briefly on a couple simple practical things. First of all, in terms of the use of extractive materials, for example, tellurium, used in solar cells, right now the recycling of tellurium, less than 1% of total supply That’s true across other relevant materials If you think about raising the industry for recycling and creating incentives for recycling to maybe only 5%, that’s a five-fold increase in the supply of tellurium without having to dig up any new supplies at all So thinking in terms of simple, practical things that can have a massive impact increasing the substitution of new Tellurium to recycled, as an alternative. Secondly, substitute materials, we know that you’ve seen when we’ve had increased demand for some materials then you get substitutes created For example, with Neodymium used in solar panels and wind turbines So let’s see. Let’s create the new materials and recycle our existing supplies. These are — we can talk about much broader kinds of social and cultural issues, but these are really simple things that can be built into the Green New Deal And third, which is already happening, you make the clean energy systems more efficient That’s why the price of solar panels has come down by — as Bill mentioned, 80% in eight years Massive improvement. That means that you can get 80% more electricity out of a given solar panel because they’re more efficient So that means we don’t have to waste as much materials to generate a given amount of energy >> ASHWIN RAVIKUMAR: Thank you. I’m going to pivot to try to get a few more questions in here. This is a different type of question but I think it’s interesting. This person asks “many initiatives for green jobs focus on big and long-term projects that often require high-level skills. But I live in a city that has greatly increased cycling route this summer and that creates an immediate need for bicycle mechanics which don’t require an engineering degree or university education Do you know of any project or programs that speak to this near-term green job creation and enrollment, or is anyone in touch with local organizations that you want to plug that are thinking about this kind of thing? I see Bob’s hand >> BILL McKIBBEN: There’s immense amounts of work going on at the city level everywhere, and find out if there’s a Bikes Not Bombs in your neighborhood. There’s terrific organizing around bikes in particular all over the place Some of it is bike advocacy for bike lanes but a lot of it is just what she’s describing This is a perfect example of a technology that everybody has in their — a lot of people have them in their garage or wherever they store stuff and a lot of the time they’re not working very well so there’s been great community-wide efforts to get people’s — get them up and running again I say this as someone who is facing yet one more surgery to cope with the fact that I went over the handlebars of my bike in July. So wear your helmet, whatever you’re doing >> ASHWIN RAVIKUMAR: Bob, did you want to speak to that? >> ROBERT POLLIN: Again, the notion that building the green economy is going to be good for research scientists and solar engineers is — it will be But most of the jobs that will be created are everyday jobs. Just like doing everything else

There’s going to be a lot of jobs for truck drivers, there’s going to be a lot of jobs for secretaries, there’s going to be a lot of jobs for accountants, there’s going to be a lot of jobs for people delivering lunch to production sites When I say four million jobs, it’s not four million jobs for solar energy nears — though there are good jobs — there’s going to be a lot of jobs in construction for example, as I was talking about with the building retrofits. Those are jobs. Right now they’re not high-paying jobs but if you organize them they can be better-paying jobs So it’s a massive opportunity for job creation across the board >> THEA RIOFRANCOS: I wholeheartedly agree with everything that’s been said and on Bob’s last point, we can be expansive about what counts as a green job. So one of the lines in “A Planet to Win” is that we need to build a green world but we have to live in it. So it’s about the on going work of social care which is a huge employer part of the country which should be supported. I’m talking about nurses and teachers and elder care and child care which are Extremely low-carbon and low resource-intensive work because they’re about human relationships So thinking about pink-collar jobs so far also as green jobs just expands our sense of who the constituencies are and how a female-led multiracial working class could be at the forefront of what the demand is >> BILL McKIBBEN: If you want to see an example, Google the video that Naomi and Molly Crabapple second in their series of here’s what it would look like if we did a Green New Deal >> ASHWIN RAVIKUMAR: So we have three minutes left. I’m going to try one more question then we can wrap it up So this question asks how will Wall Street and massive financial institutions globally begin to be held responsible for mobilizing funding for the Green New Deal and divesting securities away from the fossil fuel industry And another question is what can be done to confront transnational corporations and international agencies that insist upon free trade agreements and arrangements that can compromise national actions that are environmental Eve, we haven’t heard from you in a while. I don’t know if you would like to jump in there, or you don’t have to if someone else wants to >> BILL McKIBBEN: I’ll say quickly since I have to go at 7:30 in order to persuade the New York State teacher’s unit to divest their $200 billion pension fund This is a place where we can make huge progress fast. There are two power centers in this country There’s many, but two huge ones. One is Washington and the other is Wall Street Washington at best takes a very long time to do things and for better it no longer runs the world the way it once did. Wall Street remains hugely globally powerful and things can happen there fast Some big decision gets reflected in share prices in minutes around the world. So that’s why we work so hard to try and pressure these guys and if people are interested, stop the money pipeline is this great coalition of groups from small environmental justice local groups to big Sierra Club people like that and as soon as the pandemic is over there’s going to be lots of opportunities for civil disobedience and that kind of thing. In the meantime, there’s lots of ways to put pressure on these guys. It’s easier to go after banks than oil companies, Exxon only knows how to do one thing. JPMorgan Chase lends huge sums of money to the fossil fuel industry but it’s only 6% to 7% of their deal book so they’re less committed to — if we can make it painful and uncomfortable for them they may begin to wander away In fact, there are slight signs of that already So if you happen to be at an institution like Amherst College that has yet to divest from fossil fuel, that would be an excellent

place to go and go to work. If you’re at an enlightened institution like UMass Amherst that has already taken the step then figure out ways to join in this larger campaign against global capital. Let’s try going to the source >> ASHWIN RAVIKUMAR: I know you have to duck out. This is when the Q&A ends >> BILL McKIBBEN: Thank you so much, this was fantastic tonight >> ASHWIN RAVIKUMAR: Thank you all for the discussion Thank you to the people who have hung out and listened and asked great questions. We would like to invite you to join us for a brief 20 to 25-minute discussion group immediately following this event facilitated by community volunteers and co-sponsors of the Feinberg Series. So these will take place in separate Zoom meetings. Look at the chat box for information about how to join I guess that’s all I have to say Thank you all so much and enjoy the discussion if you’re going to stick around and enjoy the rest of your night either way >> THEA RIOFRANCOS: Thank you so much for this event