There’s been a lot of talk recently about a “green recovery” and “building back better.” But what do these concepts really mean? What are the most compelling ideas being put forward by economists, policymakers, grassroots leaders and other experts? What kinds of actions will produce the best results in terms of economic growth, improved health, lower emissions and greater resilience?

These are questions Political Climate will explore in the coming months in the new podcast series “Relief, Rescue, Rebuild,” sponsored by Third Way. Earlier this year, we launched a series called “Path to Zero,” which explored the technologies and policies needed to rapidly drive down carbon emissions. Now, we’re shifting our focus to the path to economic recovery and what that would look like if equitable, low-carbon solutions were baked in.

In this first episode, we speak to Leah Stokes, assistant professor of political science at the University of California, Santa Barbara and author of the new book Short Circuiting Policy. Leah makes the case for a green economic recovery, reviews potential barriers to implementation and discusses what she would put in her ideal green stimulus bill. 

In the second half of the show, we turn to a joint interview with Oni Blair, executive director at Link Houston, and Alex Laska, transportation policy adviser at Third Way. In this discussion, we focus on clean transportation policy and the need to “fix it first” — both with respect to infrastructure and equity issues — before tackling entirely new projects.

“Relief, Rescue, Rebuild” episodes will air monthly on the Political Climate podcast feed. Listen and subscribe on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher, Google Play or wherever you get podcasts.

Recommended reading:

  • Third Way: Building Back Better: Investing in Clean Infrastructure to Drive Economic Recovery
  • Equitable Growth: Green Stimulus, Not Dirty Bailouts, Is the Smart Investment Strategy During the Coronavirus Recession
  • Equitable Growth: Americans Want Green Spending in Federal Coronavirus Recession Relief Packages
  • Utility Dive: Senate Republicans Urge McConnell to Include Efficiency, Clean Energy in COVID-19 Recovery Package

The “Relief, Rescue, Rebuild” theme song was created by AY Musik. AY is the founder of Battery Tour — a sustainable music festival and global movement actively bringing renewable energy solutions to people in need around the world. You can hear the original version of this song, “Save the Planet,” on AY’s website or via his Instagram @AYMusik.