Dec 18th, 2019, 10:15 AM

Which 2020 Candidate Has The Best Climate Change Plan?

By Husam Ibrahim
The American Elections, Climate Change, and the Democratic Candidates

GreenPeace is a non-profit, non-governmental environmental organization that been fighting for environmental issues such as climate change since 1971.  In the midst of the 2020 American elections, the group has put together a rating system for the democratic candidates. The ratings have become so popular that they have also been cited multiple times on stage by a few of the candidates. Here are the ratings for top tier candidates and some of their key proposals in fighting climate change:

Bernie Sanders is at the top of the list with an A+ and is the only candidate to get the rating. Bernie Sander’s climate change plan revolves around the Green New Deal. His key proposals include:

  • Reaching 100 percent renewable energy for electricity and transportation by no later than 2030 and complete decarbonization of the economy by 2050 at latest.
  • Ending unemployment by creating 20 million jobs. Some examples include jobs in automation, engineering and sustainable farming.
  • Directly investing an historic $16.3 trillion public investment in combating climate change.
  • Declaring climate change a national emergency.


Elizabeth Warren comes in second with a rating of A- and was the first 2020 candidate to commit to ending new fossil fuel drilling on public lands and waters on Day One if elected. She too supports the green new deal but tackles climate change by making it part of her economic reform, public resources and national security proposal instead of just as an environmental issue. Her key proposals include: 

  • Achieve domestic net-zero emissions by 2030. 
  • Create millions of American jobs in clean and renewable energy, infrastructure, and manufacturing; and to directly confront the racial and economic inequality embedded in the fossil fuel economy.  
  • A green manufacturing plan that would invest $2 trillion over the next ten years in green research, manufacturing, and exporting of new technologies and patents in the green sector. 
  • $100 billion over ten years will be committed to offer discounts to countries hardest hit by the climate crisis, or as an incentive for regulatory changes that further reduce emissions.


It is important to note that Warren did vote for Trump’s increased military budget of $700 billion, which increased by $80 billion. This environmentally destructive pro-war vote does question her credibility when it comes to prioritization on budgeting. 

Joe Biden comes in 6th on the list with a B+ rating. It should be noted that the former Vice-President introduced the first ever climate change bill to Senate, back in 1986. 

Biden pledges to spend less money on his climate change efforts but has campaigned on taking similar measures to Bernie and Warren, though the outlines of his plans are less detailed:  

  • A federal investment of $1.7 trillion over the next ten years
  • Ensure the U.S. achieves a 100% clean energy economy and reaches net-zero emissions no later than 2050
  • Ending subsidies for fossil fuels
  • diplomatic pressure on other countries to reduce their emissions


Among the other presidential candidates, Tom Styer comes in third with an A, Cory Booker in fourth with an A-, Pete Buttgieg in ninth place with a B and Trump in last place with an F.  

The Real Clear Politics national polling currently shows Biden in the lead with Bernie and Warren, respectively in second and third. 

This is one of the most crucial times in human history so if you can vote then do vote! 

Click here to see the primary election dates state by state.