Celebrating “Earth Day,” Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez slammed Republicans for using “statistics and studies” in their opposition to her Green New Deal proposals, which included the widespread abandonment of fossil fuels in favor of “green” energy.
“Happy Earth Day!” Rep. Ocasio-Cortez tweeted. “Here’s a friendly reminder from this morning’s committee hearing that investing in sustainable energy sources now makes more financial sense than spending billions to repair fossil fuel infrastructure after each climate disaster.”
Here’s a friendly reminder from this morning’s committee hearing that investing in sustainable energy sources now makes more financial sense than spending billions to repair fossil fuel infrastructure after each climate disaster. pic.twitter.com/EsLoNqlQ2K
— Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (@RepAOC) April 22, 2021
In the attached video, Rep. Ocasio-Cortez begins, “We’ve heard a lot of, frankly, fantastic stories about what we would do if we actually commit to saving our planet.”
“We have heard that it is a socialist conspiracy takeover to bring down climate emissions below the IPCC report of 1.5 degrees Celsius,” the congresswoman continued. “We have heard that it will cause electricity bills to skyrocket and prompt families to pay hundreds of dollars a month in their normal electricity bills.”
Rep. Ocasio-Cortez then continued to reject the conservative use of “statistics” and “studies” to criticize her proposals.
“But that doesn’t actually compare, you know, while we see these statistics and these studies by Republican and conservative and pro-lobbyist think tanks develop these theoretical ideas of what nightmares could potentially await us if we actually stewarded our future, they fail to acknowledge what’s happening right now.”
Ocasio-Cortez then presented the admitted failure of general power-related infrastructure in Texas during the winter storms in February as evidence that her proposals are correct.
“Let’s take, for example, electricity bills. While there’s all this fear-mongering about if we switch to solar, if we commit to wind, that our costs will go up a lot. That fails to acknowledge what we just saw in February when Texas had a freeze and their fossil fuel infrastructure was so inadequate and unprepared thanks to both climate-denying politicians who refuse to invest in infrastructure to adapt to our future and acknowledge that we will be experiencing climate events in regions that have never experienced such events before, and also from industry, who doesn’t want to invest and actually take the cost of preparing for our future.”
“So what does that yield?” Ocasio-Cortez asked. “It yielded $16,000 electricity bills, oil and gas electricity bills, electricity bills from an oil and gas infrastructure on everyday people in the state of Texas. $16,000. That is just the everyday what we are seeing for everyday people.”
Throughout her statement, Ocasio-Cortez did not explain how her Green New Deal proposals, such as the use of wind and solar power, would have prevented what happened in Texas, or that high costs of power outside of rare weather events would not become the norm under her proposed system. She also presented the Texas storm event as an “everyday” occurrence, which it simply is not.
Her criticism of the use of “statistics” is eerily similar to Rep. Ocasio-Cortez’s 2019 claim that “there’s a lot of people more concerned about being precisely, factually, and semantically correct than about being morally right.”
“If people want to really blow up one figure here or one word there, I would argue that they’re missing the forest for the trees,” Rep. Ocasio-Cortez told CNN’s Anderson Cooper.