For the past two decades, America's leading environmental analysts, including Lester Brown, Joseph Romm and Thomas Friedman, have written of the need for a World War II-scale mobilization in response to the global climate and sustainability crisis. This election season, the advocacy has finally gone mainstream. Bernie Sanders called for a WWII-scale climate mobilization at the April 14 CNN Brooklyn debate, and on July 9, the Democratic Party platform committee overwhelmingly voted in favor of an amendment calling for a "WWII-type national mobilization to save civilization" from "the global climate emergency."
Many of us have known for years that such a mobilization will be required to save America, and indeed, all of human civilization from catastrophe. In 2007, Secretary Clinton referenced the need for a WWII-scale mobilization to address the climate crisis in a major speech on energy and climate. After the 2012 election, Susie Tompkins Buell urged President Obama to address the challenge of climate change by appointing officials to "galvanize the equivalent of the Roosevelt-led mobilization for World War II."
Now the Democratic Party at large has taken up the mantle of a Rooseveltian climate mobilization. In 2016, the idea of a World War II-equivalent mobilization to restore a stable climate -- not simply a commitment to clean energy -- is what demonstrates to Americans a serious commitment to overcoming the climate crisis.
Secretary Clinton's acceptance speech at the Democratic National Convention provides a momentous opportunity for her to double down on her advocacy of a WWII-scale mobilization to restore a safe and stable climate. If the Secretary champions a WWII-style climate mobilization, it will provide an inspiring contrast to Donald Trump's neo-isolationist "America First" approach to energy policy and global affairs. Furthermore, if she commits to holding a climate summit in the first 100 days of her administration, it will demonstrate a concrete commitment toward overcoming the climate crisis.
A principled call for a heroic mobilization to save civilization can unite Americans of all political persuasions -- including those who genuinely want to make America great again.
While Donald Trump calls the climate crisis a "Chinese Hoax" the Secretary can demonstrate her commitment to lead like FDR--to commence an "all hands on deck" mobilization that will protect our national security, create millions of new jobs, stabilize the global environment, and show American greatness.