The Green New Deal Is the Cure, Not the Cause, for What’s Happening in Texas

by Ryan Schleeter

February 18, 2021

"Many people across the country are realizing for the first time that fossil fuels are not only polluting, they are unstable."

An activist holds a Green New Deal sign during a rally outside the DNC headquarters in November 2020.

© Tim Aubry / Greenpeace

Texas is experiencing record cold temperatures and the failure of its fossil-fueled electric power grid. Millions of Texans have been without power or the ability to heat their homes for multiple days. Conservative politicians who have taken millions of dollars from fossil fuel interests throughout their careers [1] — including Texas Governor Greg Abbott and Senator Ted “Cancun” Cruz — were quick to blame wind turbines and Green New Deal policies that the state hasn’t even implemented yet. The reality is that frozen instruments at gas, coal, and nuclear plants are largely to blame.

In response, Greenpeace USA Climate Campaigner Ashley Thomson said:

“Many people across the country are realizing for the first time that fossil fuels are not only polluting, they are unstable. Millions of Texans are being let down by coal, oil, and gas right now. Our greatest concern is for the communities facing record cold temperatures, power outages, and uncertainty. Climate denial is not a victimless crime, and lives are already being lost because of Texas politicians’ refusal to acknowledge and prepare for the realities of the climate crisis. We owe it to everyone impacted to help them recover and rebuild, and to do everything we can to fight for a more resilient and truly sustainable energy system.

“In Texas and around the country, we deserve a world beyond fossil fuels. Only a Green New Deal-style investment in our shared future can get us there. It’s time to fundamentally fix the grid so it can deal with the present and increasing impacts of the climate crisis. It’s time to make investments nationwide in clean energy jobs, climate jobs, and climate solutions — putting millions of people to work while we build the renewable energy infrastructure of the future. It’s time to THRIVE.”

ENDS

[1] Sen. Ted Cruz, Rep. Dan Crenshaw, and Sen. John Cornyn spread misinformation about the role of wind energy in Texas’ grid failure. They consistently received oil and gas political donations, including from more than 30 oil and gas companies in the 2019-2020 cycle alone: https://earther.gizmodo.com/how-much-the-oil-and-gas-industry-paid-texas-republican-1846288505

Contact: Ryan Schleeter, Senior Communications Specialist, Greenpeace USA: +1 (415) 342-2386, [email protected]

Ryan Schleeter

By Ryan Schleeter

Ryan Schleeter is a senior communications specialist with Greenpeace USA covering climate and energy. His writing has appeared in National Geographic, Grist, GreenBiz, EcoWatch, and more. Find him on Twitter @ryschlee.

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