This conference has two main goals. The first goal is to show how both public ownership and a public goods approach is critical to achieving “zero carbon” and the other core objectives of the Green New Deal. The second goal is to make visible key struggles around ownership and control—including anti-privatization fights—that are taking place around the world , and how these struggles are leading to a “new internationalism” that puts both class and climate at the center of progressive politics.
Context: Climate Policy Failures and the Need for Radical Alternatives
Calls for a Green New Deal in the US have resonated around the world. Driven by concerns about climate crisis, the GND has also become a rallying cry for those who seek radical and urgent action to combat rising levels of inequality, racial injustice, as well as the rise of corporate power.
The GND has also endorsed the “net-zero carbon” target articulated in the 2015 Paris Climate Agreement, and governments at national, state and municipal levels (including New York State and New York City) have adopted similarly ambitious climate goals.
But according to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), effective action on climate change “would require rapid, far-reaching and unprecedented changes in all aspects of society” within a dozen years or less. Establishing targets, while important, are clearly not enough. Meanwhile, neoliberal policies aimed at “mobilizing private investment” in order to promote “green growth” have shown themselves to be completely incapable of even slowing the rise of emissions. These same policies have increased inequality, injustice, and precariousness all over the world.
The need for a radical change in policy is today indisputable. This realization has sparked a growing movement of unions and other allies that see the need to extend public ownership and democratic control over key economic sectors—such as energy, finance, and transportation—in order to ensure that the world has a fighting chance of addressing the climate emergency in ways that advance social and economic justice and equality.
Participants and Partners
We will be joined by unions and policy allies from Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, Korea, Mexico, Philippines, South Africa, Uruguay, and the UK.
The meeting is being organized in partnership with: National Nurses United (NNU); New York State Nurses Association (NYSNA); United Electrical, Radio, and Machine Workers of America (UE); Canadian Union of Public Employees; National Union of Public and General Employees (Canada);Transnational Institute; The Democracy Collaborative; Science for the People; DSA’s Ecosocialist Working Group; #NationalizeGrid; Our Public Power (New York); New York Communities for Change.
Registration will begin at 8:30 a.m. The program will start at 9:00 a.m. and end by 5:00 p.m. Full program and speakers to be announced.