For Democrats, infrastructure equals fighting climate change, creating jobs

In Democratic politics, and infrastructure and fighting climate change have become increasingly synonymous: You can’t have one without the other.

Take the $494 billion surface transportation bill that House Democrats passed July 1.

Republicans criticized it as an outgrowth of the Green New Deal. Democrats embraced it for the same reason, with House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee Chairman Peter A. DeFazio, D-Ore., insisting that climate change “is absolutely key for my side of the aisle.”

The Democrats’ 2020 standard-bearer, Vice President Joe Biden, is putting front-and-center in his campaign his “Build Back Better” infrastructure proposal that calls not only for building roads and bridges but also for investments in electric vehicle charging stations, zero-emission buses, transit and zero-carbon electricity generation by 2035.

Then, of course, there’s the Green New Deal, the 2019 nonbinding resolution that laid out a plan for dealing with climate change introduced by Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., and Sen. Edward J. Markey, D-Mass. That plan called for the federal government to wean the United States from fossil fuels and slash greenhouse gas emissions in part via a comprehensive investment in clean infrastructure.

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