Global weather patterns have increased attention on the adverse effects of climate change and unease grows about the threats posed by automation.
Implementation of the group’s Green New Deal infrastructure programme would mitigate the adverse effects of climate change, substantially reducing the domestic carbon emissions and automation-related unemployment.
However it will be important to build up public support for the massive systemic change advocated by many, including both Sir David Attenborough and Greta Thunberg. The often uncomfortable personal lifestyle changes needed must be seen as part of a diverse and popular programme addressing the social, economic and climate insecurity increasingly felt by the majority.
The changes would involve dramatically increasing the funding of:
- employment in face to face jobs that address the worries of people of all ages, such as inadequate health-care, education and housing,
- energy efficiency measures,
- the increased use of renewables,
- face-to-face caring in the public and private sector – difficult to automate or relocate abroad,
- interconnected road and rail services in every community,
- electric vehicles for private use
- and an enormous nationwide green infrastructure programme ensuring the rapid decarbonisation of energy, transport, resource use and food production.
The changes must be couched in terms of being a massive local job generator and one that provides business and investment opportunities. Read more here.
As the convenor pointed out in the Financial Times yesterday, the political advantage of this approach is that it would be seen by voters to be beneficial to every constituency and, as such, should appeal to all political parties. It will require a wide range of skills for work that will last decades, help to improve conditions and job opportunities for the “left behind” communities in the UK and ensure that the urgent demands of many for action on climate change can be more swiftly met.