Public Resource
The Green New Deal in the States – Part 2
Jeremy Brecher. Labor Network for Sustainability

California is one state that has made steps toward a state Green New Deal. As the deadline for legislation approached on the last evening of August, 2022, the California legislature passed five laws embodying major climate protection and justice measures, including restrictions on oil and gas drilling, 100% renewable energy by 2045, cutting overall emissions, extending the Diablo Canyon nuclear reactors, and legislation directing the California Air Resources Board to set regulations for carbon capture, utilization, and storage projects. Most of these policies were opposed by a coalition of business groups, including the California Business Roundtable and California Chamber of Commerce. They were joined by most building trade unions in a formal alliance called Common Ground which had helped kill previous climate legislation. Such opposition was overcome in part by Gov. Gavin Newsom’s last-minute decision to support the climate bills after staying quiet and not backing them until mid-August. Other states have also explored GND-style state policies in recent years, including Maine, New York, and Mississippi. California, Maine, Massachusetts, Oregon, Rhode Island, and Washington are also part of the Under2 Coalition which brings together over 270 sub-national governments representing 1.75 billion people and 50% of the global economy committed to climate protection policies.