A pair of top aides who will advise President-elect Joe Biden on issues related to the climate and environment reportedly believe that "systemic racism" has helped drive climate change, according to the Washington Free Beacon.
What are the details?
The incoming Biden administration has named Maggie Thomas as Office of Domestic Climate Policy chief of staff and Cecilia Martinez as "senior director for environmental justice," Axios reported. Both women are progressive climate advocates.
For example, Martinez declared in 2019 that "systemic racism" exacerbates climate change.
"Unless intentionally interrupted, systemic racism will continue to be a major obstacle to creating a healthy planet. The only path forward is to design national climate policies that are centered on justice," Martinez said.
According to Axios, the new staffers are part of the newly established White House Office of Domestic Climate Policy, which will help Biden with an "aggressive, government-wide approach" to climate issues.
While Biden has promised moderate approaches to most policies to generate broad support for his administration, it appears that his climate agenda may be skewed further to the left compared to other domestic policies. That's because both Thomas and Martinez believe the solution to climate change involves government spending and welfare dependency.
In fact, the Free Beacon noted that both support climate agendas that "in many ways mirror the Green New Deal":
For Thomas and Martinez, such policies require "massive" government spending and the "realignment of public dollars at all levels." Thomas's climate plan demands "trillions" in public investment—not only to "crack down" on oil production and shift away from the nation's "fossil fuel economy" but also to fund welfare programs, including rent and utility relief. Martinez's platform calls for much of the same, including increased government investment into "affordable and quality housing."
Does Biden support the Green New Deal?
Biden has not outright endorsed the Green New Deal, an uber-progressive bill introduced by Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) and Sen. Ed Markey (D-Mass.) in 2019 that boasts an eye-popping price tag of nearly $100 trillion.
However, on his campaign website, Biden said the Green New Deal "is a crucial framework for meeting the climate challenges we face. It powerfully captures two basic truths, which are at the core of his plan: (1) the United States urgently needs to embrace greater ambition on an epic scale to meet the scope of this challenge, and (2) our environment and our economy are completely and totally connected."
Still, Biden's climate plan will cost trillions of dollars, according to his website. The spending is necessary, Biden says, to set "us on an irreversible course to meet the ambitious climate progress that science demands."