Clean Recovery: U.S. Democrats unveil USD 400 billion plan

On August 25, 2020, U.S. Senate Democrats published a comprehensive plan calling for the government to step up climate action and stimulate the creation of green jobs. The new report demands public spending of more than USD 400 billion a year to achieve net-zero emissions by 2050. The spending would equal about 2% of the U.S. GDP. It is unlikely to proceed in the Senate but could be successful if the majority in the chamber changes in November’s election.

The Senate Democrats call for accelerating wind and solar power generation and public investment in electric vehicles, as well as for increased funding for public transit. The plan, called The Case for Climate Action: Building A Clean Economy for the American People, would target the creation of at least 10 million jobs, for example in clean energy manufacturing, research, construction, and agriculture. The 260-page report proposes wide-ranging measures, such as the wider use of incentives and carbon markets in the agricultural sector, which could provide farmers in rural America with income support. According to the plan, at least 40% of the benefits from climate spending would benefit low-income communities and people of colour.