Democratic Presidential Nominees: Stances on Climate Change Action Part 2

This article is a continuation of my previous blog post where I detailed where each democratic nominee stands on climate change. Since publishing part 1 of this article, Bill De Blaiso has since ended his 2020 race.

Please note: This article is not claiming that this is the only issue we should focus on in the presidential election. There are several others factors that must be considered with each candidate such as social justice, economic views, and other values. This article is just highlighting what is known about each candidate on their stance with addressing climate change.

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Amy Klobuchar

  • According to CNN, said that if elected, she would have the U.S. rejoin the Paris Agreement, restore the Clean Power Plan, and reinstate fuel economy standards
  • Proposes legislation towards 100% net zero emissions by 2050, including a $1 trillion infrastructure package
  • Co-sponsored the Green New Deal, though has considered it more “aspirational” than a plan
  • In 2007 as senator of Minnesota, she introduced a bill to begin a carbon tracking program and a bill calling for an expansion of renewable energy credits
  • Signed the No Fossil Fuel Funding pledge, but supports fracking
  • Other source

Wayne Messam

Beto O’Rourke

  • First candidate to release a climate plan: $5 trillion that calls for zero net emissions by 2050
  • Supports the Green New Deal
  • Signed the No Fossil Fuel Funding pledge, but accepted “over $550,000 from oil industry sources during his Senate race against Ted Cruz”
  • Source

Tim Ryan

  • Proposes rejoining the Paris Agreement
  • Supports the production of electric cars
  • Has not proposed a climate plan
  • Source

Bernie Sanders

  • Co-introduced the Green New Deal
  • Major opposer of the Keystone XL pipeline
  • Passed legislation to move energy system towards renewable resources
  • Released his climate plan “People before Polluters” on December 5th, 2018, which plans to tax carbon pollution to reduce it 80% by 2050, employ 10 million Americans in the clean energy sector, and create a 100% clean energy system
  • Source

Joe Sestak

  • Proposes to rejoin the Paris Agreement
  • Voted for a bill in 2009 to limit carbon emissions
  • Supports taxing carbon emissions
  • Supports development in renewable energy
  • Source

Tom Steyer

  • In 2013 donated millions of dollars to candidates across the U.S. who proposed climate action or opposed fossil fuel development
  • Founded the nonprofit NextGen Climate to build a political movement around climate action through voter registration and mobilization
  • Proposed a “Justice Centered” climate plan, which would declare climate change a national emergency
  • Supports Green New Deal
  • Plan calls for zero net emissions by 2045
  • $50 billion would go towards taxes and wages to incentivize fossil fuel workers to transition to clean energy sector
  • $2 trillion infrastructure package to make buildings more resilient to climate change
  • Source

Elizabeth Warren

  • Introduced Climate Risk Exposure Act in September 2018, which “would require companies to disclose the risk climate change poses to their financial assets” through providing information on their greenhouse gas emissions and fossil fuel holdings
  • Adopted Gov. Jay Inslee’s environmental proposal after he ended his 2020 race
  • Proposed new buildings to be net zero emissions by 2028, new vehicles by 2030, and electricity to be carbon-neutral by 2030
  • Calls for prohibiting new fossil fuel leases on all public lands
  • Proposes $2 trillion package on investment in green research and manufacturing
  • Supports Green New Deal
  • Proposed an agricultural plan to “incentivize farmers to invest in sustainable practices to reduce carbon emissions”
  • Source

Marianne Williamsen

  • Opposed nuclear energy
  • Proposed a national mandatory service for people ages 18-26 to combat climate change
  • Source

Andrew Yang

  • Through his nonprofit Venture for America, he placed talented youth on a path to entrepreneurship which included the clean energy sector
  • Proposed a $4.9 trillion plan to meet net zero emissions by 2050
  • $400 billion of the plan would be used for “Democracy Dollars”, which would allow citizens to direct federal money to candidates to decrease the power of lobbyists
  • Pledged not to accept fossil fuel industry donations
  • Plan would also require new buildings to be zero net emissions by 2025, new vehicles by 2030, and carbon neutral electricity by 2035
  • Supports nuclear energy
  • Would stop new leases for oil and gas development on public lands
  • Source

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Candidates who have proposed climate plans

Amy Klobuchar

Beto O’Rourke

Bernie Sanders

Elizabeth Warren

Andrew Yang

Tom Steyer

Candidates who support renewable energy

Amy Klobuchar

Tim Ryan

Bernie Sanders

Joe Sestak

Elizabeth Warren

Andrew Yang

Tom Steyer

Candidates who are not focusing on climate in their campaign/have not released a climate plan

Wayne Messam

Tim Ryan

Marianne Williamson

 

 

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