Greens begin push for nationwide 100 percent renewable energy mandate

Source: By John Siciliano and Josh Siegel, Washington Examiner • Posted: Friday, January 11, 2019

Environmental groups are set to fan out on Capitol Hill on Thursday to lobby lawmakers to back a 100 percent renewable energy mandate for the nation as an essential part of the progressive “Green New Deal” agenda.

The groups, including Friends of the Earth, Center for Biological Diversity, and Food and Water Watch, along with 625 members, will call on lawmakers to pursue legislation to ensure that all electricity comes from solar and wind by 2035 or sooner.

No nuclear power: Renewable energy, under the groups’ definition, would not include any form of fossil fuel or combustion-based electricity generation, nuclear power plants, biomass energy, large-scale hydroelectric power, or waste-to-energy technologies.

Not including nuclear power in the mix could be a non-starter for some on Capitol Hill, especially from the Republican side.

The UN and Green New Deal: The mandate corresponds to the United Nations’ recently released report on climate change that recommends transitioning away from fossil fuels to avert the worst effects of climate change.

Those principles also align with the so-called “Green New Deal” agenda being floated by new Democrats in the House, which calls for taking more direct action to combat the threat of global warming.

Critics of that deal say that, if adopted, it would ultimately raise the cost of electricity and place additional burdens on the average consumer.

State effort begins too: Meanwhile, another large environmental coalition called Environment America also launched a campaign to persuade the nation’s 20 new governors elected in November to enact laws and regulations to face the challenge posed by climate change.