Sierra Club Releases New, Climate-Friendly Approach to Trade #Climate #Trade

On a press call with trade and economic experts, the Sierra Club recently released a new discussion paper that outlines a proposal for a new, climate-friendly approach to trade. The proposal comes just after Congressional leaders and White House officials signaled that there is no path forward for the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade deal this year.

“The American public has made it loud and clear that the status quo on trade won’t do, so we’re putting forward something positive for people to rally behind: a new, climate-friendly approach to trade. As progressives who fought hard against the climate-denying Donald Trump, we are not about to let Donald Trump define the next trade model,” said Michael Brune, Sierra Club Executive Director. “Trade done right can help us fight climate disruption. Our vision for a new approach to trade aims to do just that.”

Throughout the election cycle, we saw an overwhelming number of Americans reject the status-quo trade model that has cost our country jobs and decimated communities, especially working class families and communities of color.

“The Sierra Club has stood with progressive allies for decades against corporate deals like the TPP that threaten workers, communities, and our climate. Today we offer our members and supporters something new to work toward — a new, climate-friendly approach to trade,” said Ilana Solomon, Director of the Sierra Club’s Responsible Trade Program.

In today’s discussion paper, the Sierra Club offers 15 proposals for how to bring decades-old trade rules into alignment with today’s climate imperatives. These proposals have been informed by input from over 50 academic and civil society trade and climate specialists. The paper outlines an approach to trade that:

  • Changes trade rules to protect climate policies,
  • Uses trade rules to increase climate protections, and
  • Mitigates the climate impacts of trade.

Moving forward, the Sierra Club will work with our grassroots and our partners to stitch climate-focused ideas into a broader proposal for a new approach to trade that promotes good jobs, healthy communities, and a livable planet.

“In the aftermath of the TPP fight, it is more important than ever that we, as progressives, offer an alternative trade vision that is rooted in fighting inequality, respecting workers’ rights, fostering healthy communities, and seeking climate justice,” said Ben Beachy, Senior Policy Advisor for the Sierra Club’s Responsible Trade Program.

“The Sierra Club will harness its strong, grassroots support to rally behind this bold vision to protect people and the planet,” Brune said.

A recording of this morning’s press call is available here. For the Sierra Club’s more specific suggestions on what climate-friendly trade deals could look like, see the discussion paper here.

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