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AFL-CIO: Green New Deal Will ‘Cause Immediate Harm to Millions’

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Sen. Ed Markey hold a news conference for their proposed “Green New Deal” in Washington, D.C., February 7, 2019. (Jonathan Ernst/Reuters)

Representatives of America’s largest organized-labor group predicted that the recently introduced Green New Deal resolution would bring “immediate harm” to millions of workers if enacted in a letter sent to the plan’s sponsors on Friday.

“We welcome the call for labor rights and dialogue with labor, but the Green New Deal resolution is far too short on specific solutions that speak to the jobs of our members and the critical sections of our economy,” reads the letter, which was signed by ten national labor unions on the AFL-CIO’s energy committee. “We will not accept proposals that could cause immediate harm to millions of our members and their families. We will not stand by and allow threats to our members’ jobs and their families’ standard of living go [sic] unanswered.”

The Green New Deal resolution, which was introduced by Senator Ed Markey (D., Mass.) and Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D., N.Y.), calls for a massive restructuring of the American economy in order to completely phase out the use of fossil fuels within ten years. The plan, which has received the support of every major Democratic presidential contender, promises to retrofit every building in the country with renewable-energy technology and provide a well-paying job in the clean-energy sector to every American who wants one.

The resolution’s architects did not address how the plan, which is expected to cost trillions of dollars, will be funded, other than making brief mention of low-interest credit drawn from specially designated “public banks.”

Majority Leader Mitch McConnell announced last month that the resolution will receive a vote this legislative session in order to “give everybody an opportunity to go on record.”

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