Pelosi stops short of endorsing Green New Deal

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Recently sworn-in Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez finally lifted the curtain on her "Green New Deal" Thursday; calling for sweeping environmental and energy changes as House Speaker Pelosi dismissed the policy as a "Green Dream".

But much of the Green New Deal has been viewed by more moderate lawmakers as radical and unrealistic, who say the goal for America to become 100 percent renewable energy dependent with net-zero greenhouse gas emissions in 10 years is next to impossible.

Ocasio-Cortez said she will immediately begin to work on legislation that would "fully flesh out the projects involved in the Green New Deal".

An outline of the proposal, backed by dozens of congressional lawmakers and the climate change activist group Sunrise Movement, was released early Thursday by Ocasio-Cortez and Senator Ed Markey, Democrat from MA.

"Even the solutions that we have considered big and bold are nowhere near the scale of the actual problem that climate change presents to us, our country, our world", Ocasio-Cortez said on NPR's Morning Edition. Hours earlier, Pelosi said she had not yet read the Green New Deal.

The proposal also calls for moving away from nuclear power, according to a fact sheet on the plan distributed by Ocasio-Cortez's office, which some climate activists favor as a carbon-free energy source. She did not "consider that to be a dismissive term". She said Pelosi asked her to serve on the committee, but she declined because it focuses on investigations.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi says she welcomes "the enthusiasm" of backers of a Green New Deal, but she stopped short of supporting it. "The Green New Deal will put the health and well-being of our communities first", Grijalva said.

Doug Lamborn, a Republican from Colorado, said at a climate change hearing in the House natural resources committee on Wednesday that the policy was akin to a "Soviet five-year plan".

Maybe Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez will have to be satisfied being merely green with envy.

Pelosi said Reps. Ben Ray Luján of New Mexico, Suzanne Bonamici of Oregon, Joe Neguse of Colorado, Donald McEachin of Virginia and Sean Casten of IL will serve on the panel, along with three Californians: Julia Brownley, Jared Huffman and Mike Levin. Use of wind and solar power would be dramatically increased under the plan. Earlier Thursday, progressive lawmakers published an outline of the proposal which they claim is created to solve "climate change" and "systemic injustice" by reducing "pollution and greenhouse gas emissions" to meet "100 percent of the power demand" through "clean, renewable, and zero-emission energy sources".

The Green New Deal goes far beyond the Clean Power Plan proposed by President Barack Obama.

One critical factor will be the buy-in of President Donald Trump, who pulled the United States out of the Paris climate accord, as is seen by Democrats as the world's most prominent climate-change denier.