Climate Action and the Green New Deal: Interview with Rep. Mike Levin
Shortly after being elected to Congress, California Rep. Mike Levin endorsed the concept of a Green New Deal (later introduced as a resolution by Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Sen. Edward Markey). Then, he initiated the first Congressional hearings on climate change in nearly a decade.
Levin represents coastal communities in the counties of Orange and San Diego. In an exclusive interview with The Planning Report, he details his plans for bold climate action and the types of policies that will ground the broad Green New Deal framework.
The resolution "addresses the myth that a shift to a clean and renewable energy economy has to come at the expense of jobs," Levin tells TPR. "Quite the opposite: The Green New Deal and an accelerated transition to renewables will help us grow the clean energy jobs of the future and lift up the middle class."
In the interview, Levin—an energy wonk at heart—names his top strategies for getting California to 100 percent renewable energy by 2045:
- Upgrading the electrical grid to accommodate distributed energy generation
- Facilitating widespread adoption of electric vehicles
- Reducing the carbon footprint of building stock
He also describes his efforts to safely store radioactive waste from nuclear plants, particularly the decommissioned San Onofre plant on the California coast. And, he promises, "We House Democrats are absolutely committed to passing an infrastructure bill."