AOC and ‘squad’ call on Biden to replace Federal Reserve chief Jerome Powell to fight climate change

US monetary policy should be ‘reimagined’ to focus on the environment, say Democratic lawmakers

Justin Vallejo
New York
Wednesday 01 September 2021 00:46
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Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez criticises moderate 'meh' policies

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and her fellow “squad” of far-left Democrats have called on Joe Biden to fire Federal Reserve chair Jerome Powell over his supposed failure to address climate change.

In a joint statement, Ms Ocasio-Cortez along with Rashida Tlaib and Ayanna Pressley urged the president to replace the Federal Reserve chair to focus its policies on redistributing economic resources based on race and class.

“We urge President Biden to re-imagine a Federal Reserve focused on eliminating climate risk and advancing racial and economic justice,” the statement said.

“Our concerns with Chair Powell’s track record are two-fold. Under his leadership the Federal Reserve has taken very little action to mitigate the risk climate change poses to our financial system.”

They also criticised Mr Powell for "weakening" regulations imposed following the 2008 financial crisis that they say risks the livelihoods of Americans across the country.

The statement was also co-signed by Democrat representatives Chuy García and Mondaire Jones.

In a response to CNN, the White House said that Mr Biden “will appoint the candidates who he thinks will be the most effective in implementing monetary policy”.

The four-year term of Mr Powell, who was appointed by Donald Trump, ends in February and the Biden administration has not indicated whether he would be replaced.

The outlet noted that the Federal Reserve joined an international network of financial regulators focused on climate change, and Mr Powell himself has warned that climate change requires “bold steps and decades of sustained efforts”.

“In the United States, our society’s overall response to addressing climate change will have to come from elected officials who have sought and received a mandate from voters,” Mr Powell said.

“Today, climate change is not something we directly consider in setting monetary policy,” he added.

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