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Sunrise Launches Green New Deal Jobs Website to Celebrate Future of Climate-Friendly Work

By Andrea Germanos - Common Dreams, July 19, 2021

Amid a sustained push for the inclusion of a Civilian Climate Corps in federal infrastructure legislation, the Sunrise Movement on Monday rolled out a new tool showcasing the potential for over 15 million jobs that simultaneously tackle economic inequality and the climate crisis.

The Green New Careers website visualizes what could be possible based on the investment of $10 trillion over a decade under the THRIVE Agenda with the enactment of the Transform, Heal, and Renew by Investing in a Vibrant Economy Act proposed by progressive lawmakers including Sen. Ed Markey (D-Mass.).

"We launched Green New Careers to show another future is possible—one that's not extractive and includes fulfilling, good-paying jobs that will revitalize our communities and combat climate change," said Paris Moran, digital director of Sunrise Movement, in a statement.

The jobs created under the proposal are long-term and pay a living wage, Sunrise says, and, regardless of type, enhance "the well-being, culture, and governance of future generations" while contributing "to the decarbonization of our economy, the resilience of our communities, or the restoration of our environment."

Listed are a handful career types, such as careworker, builder, and analyst. According to the new website:

We need to retrofit and upgrade all commercial and residential buildings to 100% sustainability, focusing on public schools, universities, and public housing. And we need to expand the number of safe, healthy, and comfortable public homes in areas undergoing housing crises. We have to expand regenerative agriculture, and level the playing field for family farmers through supply management and enforcing antitrust laws; build accessible and low-carbon public transit for all; expand wind and solar energy, including rooftop solar; and modernize and democratize our energy grid.

This investment has the opportunity to limit global warming enough to slow down the climate crisis and build the climate resilience we need to keep our communities safe.

Now is the time. We have a once-in-a-generation opportunity to to reset the United States' relationship to the Earth, the way we organize our communities, and develop a collective commitment to sustainability and resilience—all while creating 15 million new green careers.

The new jobs would also boost "equity across classes"; for 84% of the "Green Careers," a college degree isn't necessary, and 75% of the careers would provide on-the-job training, the new resource asserts.

The tool invites users to take a quiz to find which green career possibilities align with their skills and interests.

"With so much work to be done, there's no reason anyone in the richest country in the history of the world should be unemployed, underemployed, or working a job that isn't in the national interest," the website declares. "It's time for the government to guarantee good, green jobs for all."

Such a guarantee is a key part of the Green New Deal, says Sunrise, and President Joe Biden and congressional Democrats can take a step in the right direction by making sure the still-evolving $3.5 trillion budget resolution includes a fully funded Civilian Climate Corps (CCC).

"This year, we emerged from an apocalyptic global pandemic only to face the brunt of the climate crisis in the form of deadly heatwaves, droughts, and destructive storms," said Sunrise Movement executive director Varshini Prakash.

"The climate crisis is here," she said, "and the good news is we have the chance to pass one piece of the solution—a bold Civilian Climate Corps."

"The climate priorities in the reconciliation package must match the scale and urgency of the climate crisis," Prakash continued, "and Green New Careers is just one way we're bringing people into the fight, especially for young people growing up and feeling the despair that comes with seeing your world burn with no solution in sight."

"We're hoping that through this we can bring hope and vision for a livable future as we push our politicians to deliver for us," she said.

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