This is the the fifth in my installments on the Presidential Party Platforms. I’m reviewing and comparing the Democrat and Republican Party Platforms.
I know, I keep repeating this, but if you’re knew to this series, you might not know: the Republicans decided to adopt the 2016 Party Platform. On the opening day of the 2020 convention, Republicans announced that they do not have a platform, but will follow Presidents Trump’s direction. Lacking specifics, I’m comparing the 2016 Republican Platform with the 2020 Democratic Platform.
The Democratic Party has a little over 5 pages devoted to the environment. The Republican Party also has 5 pages addressing energy and the environment.
Just so I can keep everything straight, I put the information into a simple table, like I would for corporate goals. Pretty easy to understand; I think: We will______________ by_____________ so that______________ happens. The last column is the page number for your reference.
Note: After the Convention President Trump’s campaign announced a 2nd Term Agenda. The goals are many, but only the first part (We will) is addressed. How the goal will be accomplished (the “by”) is missing. Why he wants to accomplish the goal (the “so that”) is also not included. You can find the Agenda by clicking here.
So here’s the Democrats’ Combating the Climate Crisis and Pursuing Environmental Justice:
Michigan is where I was born and raised. Not too far from Flint. Yes, that Flint, Michigan. The one with the water crisis. Maybe my antennae were tuned to it. Maybe it’s because the Great Lakes are the largest reservoir of fresh water in the world. At any rate, the Democratic Platform mentions Michigan several times in the opening paragraphs of this section.
|We will||By||So that||Page|
|Rebuild our economy from the COVID-19 pandemic||Mobilizing historic, transformative public and private investments.||We launch a clean energy revolution||44|
|Use federal resources and authorities across all agencies to deploy proven clean energy solutions.||creating millions of family-supporting and union jobs; |
upgrading and make resilient our energy, water, wastewater, and transportation infrastructure;
developing and manufacture next-generation technologies
|We address the climate crisis right here in the United States.||44|
|Reverse the Trump Administration’s dangerous and destructive rollbacks of critical climate and environmental protections.||Rejoining the Paris Climate Agreement; |
Restoring protections for irreplaceable public lands and waters, from Bears Ears National Monument to the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge;
Following science and the law by reducing harmful methane and carbon pollution from the energy sector.
|The United States back in the position of global leadership where we belong.||44|
|Make investments to in education and training||Restoring and protecting workers’ rights to organize and bargain collectively;|
Including people of color, low-income Americans, women, veterans, people with disabilities, and unemployed energy workers for jobs in clean energy-related industries.
|We create millions of family-supporting and union jobs in clean energy generation, energy efficiency, clean transportation, advanced manufacturing, and sustainable agriculture across America.||45|
|Mobilize a diverse new generation of young workers through a corps and cohort.||??||We conserve our public lands;|
We deliver new clean energy, including to low- income communities and communities of color;
We address the changing climate, through pre-apprenticeship opportunities, joint labor-management registered apprenticeships for training, and direct-hire programs that put good-paying and union jobs within reach for more Americans.
|Reach net-zero emissions as rapidly as possible.||Introducing technology-neutral standards for clean energy and|
Expanding solar and wind energy deployment through community-based and utility-scale systems, including in rural areas;
Install 500 million solar panels, including eight million solar roofs and community solar energy
systems, and 60,000 wind turbines;
Leveraging federal policy to manufacture renewable energy solutions in America.
|We are free carbon pollution from power plants by 2035;|
We turn American ingenuity into American jobs by Leveraging federal policy to manufacture renewable energy solutions in America.
|Build a modern electric grid to power communities with clean electricity||Investing in interstate transmission projects and advanced, 21st century grid technologies including federal support||We build sustainable and resilient energy grids in rural America and in Tribal areas lacking energy infrastructure.||45|
|Reduce methane pollution through strong federal standards and targeted support||Repairing and replacing aging distribution systems,||We create hundreds of|
thousands of jobs, including for the same pipefitters, insulators, and other workers who built the systems in the first place and who know best how to protect our communities from methane pollution.
|We increase the number of energy-efficient homes available to low-income families;|
Affordable housing and public housing promote safe, healthy, and efficient homes
|Making energy-saving upgrades to up to two million low-income households and affordable and public housing units within five years;|
Retrofiting construction of new units
Addressing barriers and increasing funding for programs that enable energy efficiency improvements for low-income families in urban and rural areas,including through the Weatherization Assistance Program and the Rural Utilities Service.
Lower families’ energy bills
We Create hundreds of thousands of jobs.
|Set a bold, national goal of achieving net-zero greenhouse gas emissions for all new buildings by 2030;||Incentivize tens of billions of dollars in private-sector investment to retrofit four million buildings;|
Helping local governments save money and cut pollution by weatherizing and upgrading energy systems in hospitals, schools, public housing, and municipal buildings;
Encouraging states and cities to adopt energy-efficient building codes.
|We have 100% clean building sector.||46|
|Reestablish strong standards for clean cars and trucks that consider the most recent advances in technology, and accelerate the adoption of zero-emission vehicles in the United States while||Convening California and other states with labor, auto industry, and environmental leaders to inform ambitious executive actions;|
Reclaiming market share for domestically produced vehicles.
|We lead the way in building a clean, 21st century transportation|
system and a stronger domestic manufacturing base powered by high-wage and union jobs
|Support private adoption of affordable low-pollution and zero-emission vehicles;|
Increase investments in public transportation;
Invest in modernizing our freight infrastructure, including ports, rail, and maritime freight, in order
|Transitioning the entire fleet of 500,000 school buses to American-made, zero-emission alternatives within five years;|
Transitioning the three million vehicles in the federal, state, and local fleets to zero-emission vehicles;
Partnering with state
and local governments to install at least 500,000 public charging stations from coast to coast.
|We reduce harmful air pollution and protect our children’s health;|
We reduce air and water pollution, improve public health, create jobs, and improve economic competitiveness;
We close the gap with other modern countries.
|Support measures to build a clean, equitable, and globally competitive manufacturing sector, including national Buy Clean and Buy America standards;||Incentivizing production of low-carbon building and construction materials, like steel, cement, and timber, here in the United States;|
Applying a carbon adjustment fee at the border to products from countries that fail to live up to their commitments under the Paris Climate Agreement.
|We build the clean energy infrastructure of the future using American-made materials;|
We don’t let polluters undermine American competitiveness.
|Partner with farmers;||Expanding federal programs to help farmers, ranchers, and forest landowners pursue high-productivity, lower-emission, and regenerative agricultural practices;||American agriculture sector are the first in the world to achieve net-zero emissions, opening up new sources of income for farmers in the process;|
We build more resilient, vibrant, local and regional food systems.
|Support communities and|
businesses nationwide in their efforts to build zero-waste and circular economies, including
efforts to eliminate plastic waste and food waste.
|Increasing investments in voluntary conservation programs, which generate economic and environmental benefits for farmers and their surrounding communities.|
Supporting healthy coastal communities and marine ecosystems.
|We sustain and enhance our economic well-being in the fishing, tourism and clean energy industries.||47|
|Protect children’s health.||Replacing lead service lines and remediating lead paint in homes and schools; |
Remediating Superfund and other contaminated sites;
Ensuring housing and schools have adequate plumbing and safe wastewater disposal systems;
Setting science-based drinking water standards for emerging contaminants like PFOA and PFAS chemicals and establishing aggressive plans for remediating this dangerous pollution.
|All Americans benefit from the clean energy economy||47|
|Ensure racial and socioeconomic equity in federal climate, energy, and infrastructure programs and identify areas of high cumulative pollution that threatens residents’ health and safety;|
Create local jobs and reduce energy poverty,
Support locally-driven economic development
|developing a screening and mapping tool;|
Reducing heat stress in urban neighborhoods by planting millions of trees.
Directing a significant portion of clean energy and sustainable infrastructure investments to historically marginalized communities;
Installing clean energy technologies including community solar.
|All Americans benefit from clean the energy economy.||47|
|Commit to reducing climate risks and building back better after disasters and climate-fueled catastrophes in a resilient, green, and just manner;|
extreme weather events, heat stress, and increases in disease that scientists have connected to
2 climate change. We will i. We will
6 partner with states and local communities to make smart investments to avoid the loss of life and
7 property, prevent flooding, mitigate disaster risks, and adapt to costly, growing climate impacts.
|Prioritizing disaster preparedness for disproportionately exposed, frontline, and vulnerable communities and those who struggle most to cope, including seniors, low-income families, and people with disabilities;||Reduce the impacts of climate change felt in communities across the country.|
Communites can become more economically resilient to
extreme weather events, heat stress, and increases in disease that scientists have connected to climate change
|Rectify the inequities and inefficiencies of disaster response.||Having transparent and timely reporting and oversight and protections and enforcement of disability rights.||Reduce the impacts of climate change are being felt in communities across the country||47|
|Avoid the loss of life and property, prevent flooding, mitigate disaster risks, and adapt to costly, growing climate impacts.||Partnering with states and local communities to make smart investments.||Reduce the impacts of climate change are being felt in communities across the country||47|
|Empower and stand with workers and communities who have put their health and lives on the line and who have been impacted by the changing energy market;||Fighting to protect retirees’ health and pension benefits;|
Shoring up the Black Lung Disability Trust Fund;
Expanding the Radiation Exposure Compensation Act to include those harmed by our nation’s nuclear weapons efforts including uranium miners exposed to radiation on the job;
Increasing funding for the Appalachian Regional Commission to support locally-driven economic development priorities.
|Hold fossil fuel companies accountable for cleaning up|
abandoned mine lands, oil and gas wells, and industrial sites
|???||These facilities no longer pollute local environments and can be safely repurposed to support new economic activity, including in the heart of coal country.||48|
|We protect communities from sea level rise and storm surge.||Increasing support for restoring wetlands;||Reduce the impacts of climate change are being felt in communities across the country||48|
|Support the most historically far reaching public investments and private sector incentives for research, development, demonstration, and deployment of next-generation technologies, once again||Challenge the best and brightest scientists, innovators, and entrepreneurs in the world to pursue breakthrough opportunities in energy storage, heavy-duty trucking and freight solutions, sustainable aviation fuels, and direct air capture and net-negative emissions technologies;|
Advancing innovative technologies that create cost-effective pathways for industries to decarbonize, including carbon capture and sequestration that permanently stores greenhouse
gases and advanced nuclear that eliminates waste associated with conventional nuclear technology,
|The United States the world’s leader in innovation.|
Environmental justice and other overburdened communities are protected from increases in cumulative pollution.
We create jobs for blue-collar workers, including in fenceline communities, help decarbonize American industries, and create valuable new exports to help mitigate climate change around the world.
|Preserve America’s unspoiled wildernesses for hunting, fishing, hiking, and camping.||Codifying the roadless rule, and grow America’s outdoor recreation economy;|
Reverse the Trump Administration’s
harmful rollbacks of protections for national monuments like Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument and Northeast Canyons and Seamounts Marine National Monumeni
|America’s national parks and monuments, public lands, and marine protected areas are treasures that should be held in trust for future generations||49|
To tell the truth, I’m a bit surprised how much emphasis the Democratic Platform has on jobs.
The Republicans’ plan for America’s Natural Resources: Agriculture, Energy, and the Environment
The introductory paragraph of this section of the Platform focuses on protecting workers in the farming, mining, and fishery industries by minimizing interference with their work.
I grew up on a small farm. I live in a country where farming is a major industry. I’ve talked to future famers and young 4-Hers. Most people in the farming community know how important it is to protect the land which provides our food.
To tell you the truth, I don’t know that much about mining or fishery. From how the Platform reads, drilling is part of the mining industry. I don’t know much about that either.
|We will||By||So that||Page number|
|Maintain an abundant and inexpensive source of food from our farms.||Insisting that America’s trade negotiators will insist that our global trading partners adhere to science-based standards with regard to food and health regulations||We expand trade opportunities and open new markets for agriculture.||17|
|Maintain an abundant and inexpensive source of food from our farms.||Restructuring our regulatory process; |
We halt mandatory labels for genetically modified food;
We end mandates for menu labels;
We enhance dairy farmers efforts to double capacity;
We bloc rules on poultry and livestock marketing.
|Food prices do not get too expensive, particularly for low-income people.||17|
|Return control of waterways to farmers and ranchers.||Invalidating EPA’s Waters of the United States (WOTUS) rule, issued jointly with the Army Corps of Engineers.||Unelected bureaucrats do not have control of state waters, watersheds, groundwater.||18|
|Respect modern farmers’ and ranchers’ techniques to protect the land.||Allowing ranching on public lands; providing abundant water supply for America’s farmers, ranchers, and their communities.||We keep food prices low.||18|
|Expand agricultural exports through vigorous opening of new markets.||Getting the next Farm Bill passed in a timely manner.||Farmers are faced with less uncertainty due to natural weather and market risks.||18|
|Restore able-bodied work provisions to Supplemental Nutrition Assistance||Separating the administration of SNAP from the Department of Agriculture.||70% of farm bill spending is not for SNAP.||18|
|Protect farmers and ranchers from “Big Data” collection by regulations and programs.||Advance policies to protect the security, privacy, and most of all, the private ownership of individual farmers’ and ranchers’ data.||The safety of our farmers and ranchers is protected.||18|
|Return responsibility of managing forests to states to improve forest health and keep communities safe.||Promoting active, sustainable management of our forests.||We have fewer wildfires;|
We produce jobs in the timber industry for countless families.
|Plan for our energy future||Opening of public lands and the outer continental shelf to exploration and responsible production;|
Giving authority to state regulators to manage energy resources.
|We have energy security for years to come||19|
|End Obama’s war on coal.||Eliminating EPA’s Clean Power Plan.||We give America’s poor warmer winter, cooler summers, more job mobility, and cheaper food.||19|
|Expedite mining for minerals on public lands;||Allowing states to regulate mining on public land.||End our reliance on minerals from China and other nations.||20|
|Expand trade opportunities and new markets for American energy.||Increasing domestic production, including on public land;||We reduce our vulnerability to energy price volatility; |
We increase jobs.
|Enforce the original intent of the Clean Water Act||Forbidding the EPA to regulate carbon dioxide; |
Modernize the permitting process;
We stop frivolous lawsuits;
|Create jobs get projects approved, and support growth.||21|
|Acknowledge that year by year, the environment is improving.||Shifting responsibility for environmental regulations to the states; |
Transforming the EPS into an independent bipartisan commission
|We create jobs and expand opportunities for a better life for everyone willing to work for it.||21|
|Transfer federally owned land to the states.||Immediately passing legislation that provides a timely and orderly mechanism.||The lands are protected by those who know best how to do so.||21|
|Balance protecting species with the costs of compliance and the rights of property owners.||Protecting species transparently, with stakeholders input and in consideration of the impact on the development of lands and natural resources;||We don’t upset the economic viability of an area with an unneeded designation, costing jobs and hurting local communities.||22|
|Stop politicizing climate change.|
Rejecting the agenda of the Kyoto Protocol and the Paris Agreement;
|Halting the U.N.’s Framework Convention on Climate Change||We give incentives for human ingenuity and the development of new technologies; |
We allow the government to supply guns to Palestine and any government that grants Palestian membership status.
Wow! What a difference.
There’s one nice thing about the Republican Party adopting the 2016 platform. We can also check to see what progress has been made in the past almost 4 years. If you want to do that in a concrete way, please visit GovTrack.us and use the search bar.
About 30 Environmental regulations have been recinded. Dozens more are in the works. If you’d like to review Deregulation in the Trump area, go here.
I gotta say, the two parties have widely different views about the environment. A lot of the Republican Platform doesn’t even seem to be about the environment, unless you think deregulation helps the environment.
What do you think? Was this enlightening?
It’s not easy to compare the two Platforms. They don’t use the same style or organization. But, I’m determined to give it my best shot.
There’s one thing that really stood out for me this time. Both parties are really focused on jobs. Maybe that’s a starting point for collaboration.
Next up: Our Democracy
After that, I have Immigration, and Leadership. That’s four more weeks of research. No wonder people have trouble sorting through the facts. I wonder how many people have the stamina.
If you missed my prior Party Plank reviews, here are the links:
Party Platform 2020: The economy
Party Platform 2020: The pandemic
Party Platform 2020: Healthcare