Ocasio-Cortez calls Jay Inslee’s climate plan the ‘gold standard’

Source: By Miranda Green, The Hill • Posted: Thursday, June 6, 2019

The Green New Deal champion praised the Democratic governor of Washington’s climate proposal Tuesday, calling it the “gold standard climate plan.”

“Jay Inslee’s I think is the gold standard climate plan that we have right now,” Ocasio-Cortez told The Hill Tuesday.

“I do think that Jay Inslee’s plan is a phenomenal blueprint and example of where we need to go. It’s got the scale, the jobs and justice,” she added.

Inslee, who is running his presidential campaign almost entirely on the issue of climate, has released multiple climate plans that address different sectors of climate action. The main component of his plan aims for an energy grid that would be zero emissions and zero carbon use by 2030.

The Green New Deal, which aims to transition the United States to a renewable electric grid through the creation of green jobs and economic equality, calls for a similar timeline.

Ocasio-Cortez’s praise for Inslee’s plan follows the release of Joe Biden’s own long-anticipated climate plan Tuesday morning.

The lawmaker criticized the former vice president’s policy for failing to scale as quickly as necessary. Biden’s plan would invest $5 trillion to bring the U.S. to net-zero carbon by 2050 — a much slower timeline than the one she backs.

“Scientifically, anything that is less than helping us cut carbon emissions in half by 2030 is going to be too late,” Ocasio-Cortez said.

“It’s a start, and I think that what that has shown is a dramatic shift in the right direction, but we need to keep pushing for a plan that is at the scale of the problem,” she added.

Inslee also hit Biden’s proposal Tuesday, telling reporters in Michigan, “This is our last chance. We don’t have 30 years to get this job done. … I believe we have to have a president who will look at the CEOs of the oil and gas and coal industry and tell them to stand down.”

Biden joins Inslee and former Rep. Beto O’Rourke (D-Texas) as one of only three major Democratic candidates who have released comprehensive climate plans.

Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass) released a plan Tuesday morning focused specifically on growing green manufacturing jobs. Ocasio-Cortez said she had not yet read the plan.

Ocasio-Cortez, however, shied away from a direct endorsement of Inslee for president, saying she isn’t planning to endorse anyone “anytime super soon.”

But she did throw her support behind recent calls for the Democratic National Committee to hold a debate focused entirely on the topic of climate change. Warren and Inslee have both backed the idea.

“That’s absolutely what we need. We went all the way through 2016 without any substantive climate change questions in the presidential debates, so I think they owe us one,” Ocasio-Cortez said.