The Legacy of the Green New Deal

November 3, 2022

A more inspiring climate story.

The Roosevelt Rundown features our top stories of the week.

How the Green New Deal Changed the Conversation

Few have done more to change the climate paradigm than Rhiana Gunn-Wright.

As an architect of the Green New Deal, Gunn-Wright was instrumental in expanding the limits of climate policy, and telling a story far larger—and more inspiring—than curbing carbon emissions by taxing them. 

On a new episode of How to Save a Country, Gunn-Wright—now Roosevelt director of climate policy—talks with hosts Felicia Wong and Michael Tomasky about the Green New Deal’s vision: affirmative investment in green industries, decarbonization as an engine of economic growth, and racial equity and job creation at the center of the national project.

The legacy of that vision is clear in today’s politics. Environmental justice is now an essential part of the narrative; and industrial policy, which she has championed for years, is becoming mainstream.

“Back in 2019 when I was doing all these interviews, not a day went by where people didn’t ask me, ‘Well, why should equity be part of this? Why should racial justice be part of discussions about climate or decarbonization?’” Gunn-Wright recalls. 

“And now you can’t actually have a conversation about climate without mentioning equity and justice and environmental justice.”

Listen now, and be sure to catch next week’s special episode, featuring midterm analysis from Wong and Tomasky.


Why Rate Hikes Aren’t the Answer

For the sixth time since March, the Federal Reserve raised interest rates—the most aggressive string of rate hikes in decades, and a move some economists fear will hurt workers. 

“I want to make the case that we might not need a recession,” Roosevelt’s Mike Konczal told Jonquilyn Hill on The Weeds this week.

“There’s already been really positive developments toward what the Fed had been calling a soft landing,” Konczal said. “If unemployment goes up a lot, it has real, deep, and lasting consequences for workers, so we really want to try to avoid that circumstance.”

Learn more in Roosevelt fellow Justin Bloesch’s latest blog post, “Why Unemployment Can Stay Low While We Fight Inflation,”—covered this week by Paul Krugman of the New York Times and Justin Lahart of the Wall Street Journal.


What We’re Reading and Listening to

What Aren’t We Doing to Fix Inflation? [feat. Joseph Stiglitz, J.W. Mason, and Lindsay Owens] – Vox

After Neoliberalism: All Economics Is LocalForeign Affairs

That ’70s Show [podcast]The New Republic’s The Politics of Everything