Michael Bastasch | Energy Editor
The Green New Deal could cost up to $93 trillion over a decade, according to a new report by the right-leaning American Action Forum (AAF).
That comes to an estimated cost of $36,100 to $65,300 per American household per year to meet the Green New Deal’s goals, AAF reported Monday. Those goals include “net-zero” emissions, widespread high-speed rail, guaranteed jobs, universal health care and upgrading every building.
Thus, the potential cost of the Green New Deal could range from 63 percent of the median to nearly 106 percent of what the average household earns a year. The median U.S. household income was $61,372 in 2017, according to government figures.
AAF looked at what it would cost to achieve the Green New Deal’s main goals. For example, eliminating emissions from the electric grid is estimated to cost $5.4 trillion over 10 years. Also, “greening” the U.S. transportation system could cost up to $2.7 trillion, including building out high-speed rail.
Universal health care, on the other hand, would add an estimated $36 trillion in costs to the Green New Deal over a decade — this was included in the proposal despite having nothing to do with the environment.
— American Action Forum (@AAF) February 25, 2019
U.S. Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez walks away from the front of the White House with her deputy communication director Anika Legrand-Wittich (L) in Washington, U.S., Feb. 12, 2019. REUTERS/Jim Bourg
“The Green New Deal is clearly very expensive,” wrote AAF policy analysts, including economist Douglas Holtz-Eakin, a former Congressional Budget Office director and adviser to former Arizona Sen. John McCain’s 2008 presidential campaign. Holtz-Eakin is now AAF’s president.
New York Democratic Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez joined Massachusetts Democratic Sen. Ed Markey to introduce Green New Deal resolutions in early February, calling for overhauling the U.S. economy to get greenhouse gas emissions to “net-zero” within 10 years.
The resolution also calls for a slew of welfare programs, from federal job guarantees to universal health care, and for the government to focus on “repairing historic oppression” of certain groups of people. (RELATED: Washington Post Rips Green New Deal: ‘We Can’t Afford Bad Ideas’)
Ocasio-Cortez said the resolution, though non-binding, was needed to take global warming seriously. In a livestream to supporters Sunday night, Ocasio-Cortez said global warming was “going to kill us” if nothing is done.
Republicans oppose the Green New Deal, seeing it as a massive expansion of government to control almost every aspect of American life.
“The American Action Forum’s analysis shows that the Green New Deal would bankrupt the nation,” Wyoming GOP Sen. John Barrasso said in a statement.
“Promising new technologies like advanced nuclear power, carbon capture, and carbon utilization hold the key to significant emissions reductions,” said Barrasso, the chairman of the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works.
Democrats are divided on support for the Green New Deal, despite support from every Senate Democrat running for president in 2020.