Electrek compiled how three environmental and political groups — The Center for Biological Diversity Action Fund, Build a Movement 2020, and Greenpeace — grade the presidential candidates on environmental and climate-change issues.

As we previously wrote in Climate Crisis Weekly, The Yale Program on Climate Change Communication reported that among all registered voters, global warming is ranked fifth and environmental protection is ranked eighth as the “most important issue” when it comes to deciding who they’ll vote for.

The Center for Biological Diversity Action Fund based their final grades on averages for wildlife, public lands, environmental justice, and climate.

Build a Movement 2020‘s four criteria are: Will declare a climate emergency; Commits to reach net-zero carbon by 2030 or ASAP; Commits to remove a trillion tons of CO2 by 2050; Commits to climate restoration emergency action by 2030. Their final grades are an average of the four criteria’s grades.

Greenpeace based their scores on kickstarting the Green New Deal and saying no to fossil fuels — “the recipe for addressing climate change before it’s too late.”

You can click on the above links for detailed explanations of their grades and findings. The candidates are listed in alphabetical order.

Joe Biden (D)

  • The Center for Biological Diversity Action Fund: C+
  • Build a Movement 2020: C
  • Greenpeace: B+

Michael Bloomberg (D)

  • The Center for Biological Diversity Action Fund: no grade
  • Build a Movement 2020: D
  • Greenpeace: C+

Pete Buttigieg (D)

  • The Center for Biological Diversity Action Fund: C-
  • Build a Movement 2020: C
  • Greenpeace: B+

Tulsi Gabbard (D)

  • The Center for Biological Diversity Action Fund: no grade
  • Build a Movement 2020: no grade
  • Greenpeace: B

Amy Klobuchar (D)

  • The Center for Biological Diversity Action Fund: D
  • Build a Movement 2020: C+
  • Greenpeace: C+

Bernie Sanders (D)

  • The Center for Biological Diversity Action Fund: A
  • Build a Movement 2020: C+
  • Greenpeace: A+

Tom Steyer (D)

  • The Center for Biological Diversity Action Fund: B
  • Build a Movement 2020: C+
  • Greenpeace: A

Donald Trump (R)

  • The Center for Biological Diversity Action Fund: no grade
  • Build a Movement 2020: F
  • Greenpeace: F

Elizabeth Warren (D)

  • The Center for Biological Diversity Action Fund: A-
  • Build a Movement 2020: C
  • Greenpeace: A

Electrek’s Take

Build a Movement 2020 isn’t impressed with any candidate, giving only a C+ as the highest grade. Its founder is Paul Zeitz, who is a senior policy adviser at the Foundation for Climate Restoration. Zeitz just feels they’re all moving too slowly. Zeitz told Fast Company that “an ‘A’ president would commit to achieving net-zero CO2 emissions by 2030.”

Tulsi Gabbard has oddly been left out by both Build a Movement 2020 and The Center for Biological Diversity Action Fund, but the League of Conservation Voters gave her a national environmental lifetime score of 96%, which is an A. Gabbard wants to drop fossil fuels and their subsidies, and require 100% of electricity in the US to come from green energy by 2035. She also wants zero-emissions vehicles and tax credits for green energy.

Climate change and green energy are at the forefront of Sanders’ campaign; he did trailblaze with the Green New Deal, after all. So it’s unsurprising that his grades are high. Warren also has a detailed plan for a Green New Deal and says she’ll tackle the fossil fuel industry if she wins. Steyer also supports a Green New Deal and says he’ll hold the fossil-fuel industry accountable.

Buttigieg and Biden both say they’ll stop fossil-fuel subsidies and have plans to reach net zero by 2050. Klobuchar also says this, but her score is impacted by a lack of a detailed plan. Buttigieg is in favor of carbon capture, so that negatively impacts his score. Greenpeace says Biden has not committed to fully ban new fossil fuel drilling on public lands and waters, nor halt federal permits for new fossil fuel infrastructure. The Center for Biological Diversity Action Fund calls Biden’s track record “a mixed bag.”

Michael Bloomberg supports net zero by 2050 and wants to stop fossil-fuel subsidies, but he doesn’t fully support a Green New Deal.

Donald Trump, the only Republican to be graded — because the chances of former Massachusetts governor Bill Weld beating Trump in the Republican primaries are next to none — gets an F from 2 out of 3 report cards because he is a climate-change denier who subsidizes fossil fuels and shows no support for green energy, and hates wind turbines. His cabinet is full of former coal and oil lobbyists. He also pulled the US out of the Paris Agreement.

Want to know where some of the Democratic candidates stand on electric vehicles? Check out my colleague Bradley Berman’s post here.

Photo: CNN

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