Green New Deal


You're listening to Monaco. Does the finest I program all about the cities we live in. I'm Angie talk coming up on the program. At building an inclusive green economy were ensuring prosperity for everyone and that actually what we do as a municipal government we need to lead by example the new green deal. We hear about to every week on the news so this week we decided to unpack this bowl. Proposal is all about how it wants to tackle both inequality and climate change at the same time we're in Los Angeles to explore the plans of Eric Garcetti. <hes> pity meet one of the co-authors of the original green new deal published in the U._K.. Over ten years ago and head over to New York for the state governor has just passed climate action bill all of his own plus what roads architects play lake in its discussion that coming up right here on the urban est with me so welcome to this week's this program ever since Donald Trump decided to pull the United States out of the Paris climate agreement is fallen upon city and state leaders to fight the climate crisis head on in the weeks months followed announcement. We saw a mobilization of leaders across the country committing honoring the ambitious goals of the deal. I'm progressive. Politicians have also been getting behind the notion of a green new deal that looks to fix the economy and protect the environment to is named takes inspiration Gratien from Roosevelt's new deal that helped pull the U._s. out of depression. The idea of for modern green version has gathered pace since gaining support of Progressive Democrats One U._S. City that has been at the heart of the debate is is Los Angeles. Eric Garcetti has created a climate emergency mobilization department and the first Climate Emergency Commission in the world and back in April. He announced his green you deal for his city setting in Los Angeles on the course to be carbon neutral by twenty fifty and driving. The implementation of this plan is the city's chief Sustainability Officer Lauren Favor O'Connor Monaco's bureau correspondent in Los Angeles Collado Roberta calls out with Lauren on the sidelines of the L. A. Design Festival to understand how the city got to this point and what lies ahead for better or worse. We were ready on the day. We knew that this was the big announcement that president isn't trump was making back on June first two thousand seventeen but who's counting and instead of crying in a corner and being so frustrated with the world around us mayor Garcetti decided he needed to move into action and the moment that announcement was made think he was really the first public figure to come out and say that if the president is out were still in I'm going to be working with my counterparts. My peers around the country to show that America has not turned its back on the international community and so we went out that day with a statement of network that mayor Garcetti created back in two thousand fourteen to really support what the administration was doing under the Obama administration than sixty mayors on the day came out and said we will uphold the Paris climate agreement by the end of that day our membership and climate mayors doubled and by the end of that week our membership in climate mares quadrupled and now we're four four hundred twenty-five climate mayors across forty eight out of fifty states representing seventy one million Americans are saying we're upholding the Paris climate agreement and so no there was no question in megacities mind what we needed to do and it just shows so you know regardless of you've federal government policies if you've truly don't identify with it does another way around it now. Another thing you mentioned was this idea of every citizen here in Los Angeles have access to be part of the green economy deal. You get a lot of community I._T.. Pushback I guess people saying you know what yes there's all. These incentives and interior is all great but I simply cannot afford it because it is a long-term investment or has city hall made it easier for people to actually join said economy me you know it's been really interesting and exciting the reaction that we've been getting from communities across the city we actually hear from communities and families and not the were asking them to but that they'd be willing to pay more for to be able to access more recycling or solar on their roof for all these things they'd be willing to do it because they know that it's going to pay off in the end and that's what we're asking because actually we have programs in place to enable them them to be paid to put solar on their roof or to work with us to improve the amount of food recovery that we do in homes and businesses so we're not asking this to come at a cost of people but we're see that there's there's such urgency in the minds of our families across Los Angeles that they're willing to go the extra mile to make a difference in their children's lives now. That's not across the board. It's not all nirvana right. There are people that are genuinely concerned an anxious about the changes that we need to make people are concerned for their jobs that they're in the current fossil fuel industry and we have to be really intentional about how we help people through that transition. It's not overnight but it is a transition and we do have since we are setting these goals as we have the ability to help you part of that transition. There are people that are concerned that were maybe asking them to get out of their car and to take public transit or to take shared vehicles that are electric themselves that may be the case in some places but it also also as people start to take on these new habits they see their improvement in their quality of life and so these are definitely leaps of faith that some people have to to make myself included. I drive to work. I don't live near metro station so I drive my electric vehicle to work and I know that I can because I got charging at my workplace and you know near my home and and those are promises we have to make to Angelenos as well now while we were talking and seeking about numbers there was one that was mentioned in talk that was really striking to Mitch was the nine hundred thousand trees initiative. Tell us a bit more about that so we know that trees play such an important role in an urban environment like Los Angeles for many many reasons for public health an air quality the improvement for shading extreme heat and hot weather that we're seeing increasing incidences of high heat days from climate change it absolutely improves the liveability of communities moorpark space more greenspace ace by having treeline streets and so we have some very ambitious goals as you said ninety thousand tree planting over the next three years twenty twenty one and by twenty twenty eight increasing the tree canopy the of our most needed neighborhoods by fifty percent. That's a significant amount of programming. We finally been able to restore our budget for tree planting and maintenance to pre recession levels. So we have to come back from a lot of lack of investment over the last decade in our trees and green infrastructure so now we've restored them to whether used to be we're hiring an urban forrester for the first time in the city's history and developing updating for many many years Urban Forestry Management Plan. That's going to allow us to look at areas of most need the types of trees that will thrive and really bring those attributes back to our communities that was lauren favor connor chief sustainability officer for the city of Los Angeles and she was speaking to Monaco's Kaleta Rabelo now while the concept of green new deal has been gaining being momentum after getting the backing of leading Democrats in the United States Congress. This is not a new idea in fact twelve years ago in the United Kingdom. The green new deal group was created bringing together environmentalists and experts from the water finance energy politics to find a solution to the ongoing climate breakdown that conclusions were published in two thousand eight in a report called the green you deal the analyst author and campaigner painter Andrew Sims is one of the co-authors of that original green you deal and he joined me a little bit earlier back in two thousand seven when the financial crisis was starting to kick off there were a range of individuals working in things like green energy renewable energy the broader environmental agenda but also people looking at some of the big macro flaws in the economy. We gathered together in a cafe in south London said we think something needs doing about about this because it wasn't just that there was a problem to do with the climate back then you had a triple whammy if you like the financial crisis was kicking off there was seen to be a systemic failure of banking occurring the oil price was over one hundred forty dollars a barrel which itself was driving really high food prices plunging tens of millions of people into hunger around the world and they will also extreme weather events happening which were leading to crop failures so we thought we need a solution we need a way to reengineer the economy to set it on a more sustainable path both in terms of how it operates fundamentally in terms of his kind of financial system but also in terms of what is delivering what it needed to deliver at that time was getting the economy onto a path of being climate-friendly but also insulating it from the external shocks that came from the big geopolitics of energy extremely high prices and the rest of it so gather together and we published a report with green new deal which had a sort of to step process to it. The report was published in two thousand eight as the financial crisis was getting into it sort of full stride and we suggested the way that you could solve the economist problems at the same time setting on a low-carbon path and generating the kind of jobs that we needed in every constituency was massive investment in a low-carbon transitions dancing with the retrofitting of the nation's <music> housing stock. We've got your twenty six million plus houses most of which reportedly energy inefficient and that by doing that you could provide any economic stimulus you could tackle fuel poverty you create more convivial living conditions for people at the same time setting the country on this transition pathway for for low-carbon now at the time it was picked up a little bit some of the Political Parties in Europe. Pick it up picked it up one or two of the United Nations institutions picked it up but it fell on fairly death is in in terms of Maine the mainstream political parties in the United Kingdom globally that was a wave of so-called green stimulus spending in Britain the things which for announced by then Labor Chancellor of the Exchequer at us to darling translated through you over three year period into no more than half hour delay in the accumulation of Britain's greenhouse gases and was only focused on cashing in your old car for one the met the European average fuel efficiency standard and swapping hang out some old borders for more efficient boys so it was kind of accepted in theory at the time but nothing done in practice and just tell me Andrew the idea here is not that you you stop the economy functioning not that you say we shouldn't have production that the economy is bad in itself but the reengineer the way the economy is Ron so that you can be a bit more sustainable in in the things you do you can be more carbon-neutral in the in the in the way that you run cities for example so it's not opposed rose to the economy O- on the country it's it's a reimagining of the economy. It's a way of getting the economy to do. The things that you want to do to give you good quality of life to give you good quality jobs to give you cleaner to breathe to give you cities which convivial to move through an easy to get around to give you homes which are pleasant to live in in in heat ways the likes of which we're experiencing in Europe the moment it's about finding places safe homes for your savings. One of the great things about renewable energy is that the period of time that you expect I said of wind turbines a windfarm to operate over beautifully matches a typical savings period for a pension. It's about getting the economy to deliver better quality of life and to allow us to thrive within whilst tackling the what had been cooled existential environmental threats that we face at the moment like climate breakdown and tell us when we come down to the level of the city what impact do think the green new deal could have had or could have their I live in London one of the great cities but also sadly in spite of our advanced level of development still a very polluted city Assissi in which the last cost estimates suggested that ten thousand people each year die prematurely because of our poor air quality if you imagine in city light London if we were to green the city both by having improved clean public transport so that we were less reliant upon the car that would have a huge impact on the health of our children and older people and indeed everybody if you could imagine physically draining the city by increasing the amount of green space available that would also have a huge be a huge huge bonus for our health and well being we know that more contact with green spaces is fundamentally important for mental health and cities can be lonely place in fact just a few days ago London became declared as the first National Park Hong City. That's an invitation to re imagine your urban spaces that we live in to see them for their potential for us to have a better relationship with the natural world so there are huge positives about meeting economic goals meeting environmental goals meeting social goals to do with better health and better wellbeing all there for the taking and as the debate about the green new deal takes off in the US do feel the branding of these changes visit the notion of coming back to the concept of agree. New Deal is likely to take off in the U._K.. And in other European citizens all well. What's interesting is that it almost took the green new deal to be taken up by the new intake of exciting young Democrat senators in the states to reignite interest in other parts of Georgia and now we have Yoenis verifier kissed going around Europe pushing the idea? We have the green parts of. You're pushing the idea in Britain. We have the opposition Labor Party bringing forward initiatives around that and several independent initiative so it seems that the the green seed has been truly planted and is already beginning to sprout in the political soil of your the question will be for is whether we take advantage of this in a timeframe and with the urgency that the climate science tells his is necessary and it's still the case that wall lip service this is being paid to these ideas we're having national governments and declaring climate emergencies but still pursuing policies to lock in some of the old polluting ways of doing things whether that's expanded airports or whether that's giving tax breaks to fossil fuel companies so there was a gap between the awareness that we've arrived at with the debate around the green you deal and practical steps to actually do something practical constructive and coherent in policy terms so you remain positive about the potential here for us. Ah Changing asset is and and changing the way we live in the near future their actions that we can begin taking today there are actions which are happening today that if you would join the dots were all the most progressive policies to do with introducing renewable energy introducing Clean Public Transport retrofitting people's homes you would end up with an almost perfect city as it stands at the moment all those things are not happening in the same place but we looked to the major cities of world especially cities like London to be pioneers and to create a world which we can all thrive in Britain Andrew Great speech you and inspiring stuff thank you now. You may have missed it. Among the splurge of doom and gloom headlines has been one good piece of environmental news to recently emerge last week New York Governor Andrew Cuomo signed into law the climate leadership and Community Protection Action Act is billed as New York's answer to the green new deal being championed in Washington. The new legislation is highly ambitious in its scope and if it meets his goals the state will switch to seventy percent renewable energy by twenty twenty thirty and go carbon-neutral might twenty fifty this will not just be one of the most ambitious laws in the nation but also one of the most progressive in the world are America's editor at large at stocker sat <hes> with the New York Times and Bonnard who covers the region's climate an environment beat to impact little I would it means for the city and the state this New York State. Law is one of the world's most ambitious pieces of legislation nation past anywhere in the world. It's an effort to completely transform the economy of New York state in order to reach a point by twenty fifty where there will be zero carbon emissions from the state's economy in May know exactly the flown under the radar but it hasn't received maybe the attention that it should have given that it is potentially anyway such a watershed moment. I just wondered what your thoughts on that were well. I think that makes sense because there have been so many extreme weather events events and so many alarming reports coming out about climate change. There's also the extinction rebellion movement and a lot of social and political movements around climate change that grab a lot of headline and they should whereas state legislation is nuts and bolts governance issue that might not be sexy headline especially in international news but in this case it really deserves more attention because we're talking about the region that includes New York City this is if it were country on its own it would be one of the world's largest largest economies and it seeking to lead the way in developing new green technologies transforming the way we get our electricity the way we drive the way we heat our houses and all these different aspects of life in order to reach this very ambitious goal and I wonder if you could just unpack it a little bit more. Obviously you mentioned the fact that by twenty fifty states looking to go carbon neutral but what are the steps along the way and involves a very ambitious cut in emissions not just adjust for twenty fifty and maybe we can look at some of the winners such as win power for example and also just how much say this city New York would have to change in order to me or those goals okay well first of all in order order to go to seventy percent of electricity coming from renewable sources by twenty thirty which is one of the interim goals of the plan in order to do that that means radically increasing the amount of wind and solar energy that we use it's currently only about four percent of what is used in the state so that means a huge investment and huge new construction of wind and solar energy facilities which is also expected to create a lot of jobs and opportunities for investment assessment. We don't only have to reach seventy percent but the total amount of electricity generated is going to have to increase as well because another part of the plan involves moving away from natural gas and oil powered heating and also a big push to move of two electric cars if more and more cars and more and more heating systems are driven by electricity that means we need more electricity total now governor Cuomo has been decidedly luke warm on an environmental bill. It was in Albany without being able to be passed for several years and now there's a suggestion that in order to sign it now he watered down the components within it all that people who are disappointed that it doesn't go far enough absolutely some of the groups that were critical to the bill's passage with their activism have said that while they're happy at past they're disappointed in the watering down of the social justice part of it so governor Cuomo did support the bill in the end it really the turning point was the change in control of the state Senate but then Cuomo himself did have some questions about the hard requirement to send a certain percentage of the investments to certain poor communities and language which was changed to offer a little more wiggle room in that area now it says that a certain percentage of the benefits have to go to those communities which could be interpreted as to say that you don't have to actually locate a green power plant and all the jobs that come with it in an environmental Armenta justice community if you can say that community is benefiting in some other way so there's a little wiggle room there and some of the supporters of the green new deal aspects of this are disappointed in that but they say it certainly better than nothing the grey areas of politics talking of politics. I wanted to know how susceptible this bill is to changes in Albany. We were talking earlier about how a change in the legislature it turning fully democratic at allowed this to happen in the first place on their fears that if Republicans rest back control of one of the chambers this may go down the drain well it is theoretically possible. I will say that to actually pass countervailing legislation that would repeal this law would require a passing both houses in the New York state legislature and the House of Representatives in the state legislature has been democratic for a very very long time and I don't think that's likely to change the political problem that the law was trying to solve was that in the past governors have issued. Would set some goals and guidelines and ambitions for the state but they weren't enshrined in law so when an administration would change the next one could just completely deplore ties or change the climate goals now these goals are enshrined in law and there's even a provision saying that state agencies in the future when considering other policies or permits or actions that might not on the face of them look related to climate change. They have to actually consider the impact of those decisions on on states ability to reach its climate goal so that means when certain land use policy or building a pipeline or any other kind of issue comes before the state government is supposed to take that into account bylaw final question. Do you think that New York is going to be able to follow through with all of these plans. It's one thing saying it's GonNa do it. But do you think it's GonNa meet those targets well. That's the huge question we are talking about a really transformative set of actions and it's not a lot of time when you look at it but there is quite a lead time before anything really start to happen. There's a working group that has to meet that will take two years to set out more specific goals and then those goals will be handed to the state agencies to draft regulations and so it'll be you know probably three or four years before specific regulations are given out to say what people in companies have to do to comply with this so obviously these targets are very ambitious but there is not a clear roadmap to how we're going to get there a report by Monaco's Nichols America's editor at large Ed Stocker finally on today's episode architects for climate and the United States the architecture lobby has come out in support of the green new deal calling on architects architects and designers to become activists within the industry to understand what this means Monaco's Colorful Bella is but with Sydney Franklin the associate editor the architects newspaper. Let's hit that conversation essentially what they were doing is outlining four key things that need to happen within the profession and the day-to-day worker firms for us as a collective group to fully support the greed new deal so I'll just go through them number one practice it just needs to be reformed so firms across the country larger small need to promote diversity and equal pay and allow voices to be heard no matter their experience or age because everyone has something of value to contribute contribute number. Two resilience needs to be redefined from the way it spent traditionally tackled over the past fifteen years in terms of elevating goals for carbon neutral cities and structures number three the architecture lobby believes that technology needs to be reassessed which that's their term and it's huge so the question is how will automation and more advances in building construction help decrease build times and lesson impact on the environment and the last asking is that Labor needs to be Reim- powered which is actually two parts architects need to reject collaborating with groups that utilize unfair labor practices and they also need to seek to only use building materials that are truly sustainably made across the world and in the U._S.. So these four elements speaks to how the profession should move forward in the next few decades as we fight climate change and the growing inequality here in the U._S.. Now I know that a couple of months before the statement the American Institute of Architects also issued its support for degreen deal. I kind of it kind of begs the question then what role can architect play then in this discussion absolutely so it's interesting because the A._l.. Last year before the greed new deal really got heated they had told architects to really see themselves in a role as an architect attacked activist and whatnot means is thinking of yourself beyond a service professional who simply just engages with developers and the government to make buildings happen to design but instead to really be political political and think about yourself not just as an architect by that someone who's like embedded into you know civic participation and thinking about you know what architects can do you specifically with their own unique knowledge to push those four things forward that I mentioned from the architecture lobby in terms of making sure that their own internal practice is kind of reengaged and that means diversifying find the workforce making sure that all voices are heard redefining resilience of course is huge architects are looking for to tackling new ways to fight climate change in you know everything from hurricanes hurricanes to earthquakes global warming. It's all super super difficult and Rian powering Labor is another thing that is I personally think is a huge huge item on the list in technically means that it's two little hard right now to understand where exactly building products are being sourced from and whether or not that Labor across the world is being done by say oppressed populations such as children or immigrants we definitely know that some grand pieces of architecture and the world have been built by what you could call modern-day slaves so it's kind of a call for architects to be hyper hyper aware of you know what what they're doing and how they're designing from top to bottom Sydney Franklin the associate editor the architects newspaper speaking to Monaco's Kaleta Rabelo and that's all of this edition of the honest with me Andrew talk this show who is produced by Colored Rubella research by Nick Minnie's and edited by Alex Port Phoenix to play you out of this episode of the Urban Est his Sharon Jones and adapt kings with this land is your thank you for listening to g Z. 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