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Ocasio-Cortez: It’s ‘legitimate’ to ask if OK to have children in face of climate change

The Hill logo The Hill 2/25/2019 Miranda Green

a person standing in front of a crowd: Ocasio-Cortez: It’s ‘legitimate’ to ask if OK to have children in face of climate change © Getty Images Ocasio-Cortez: It’s ‘legitimate’ to ask if OK to have children in face of climate change Freshman lawmaker Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) says it's a "legitimate question" to ask whether it's OK for parents to continue to have children in an age of looming climate-related consequences.

Speaking to her 2.5 million followers on Instagram over the weekend, the progressive lawmaker parsed the question she said she hears from her younger constituents.

"There's scientific consensus that the lives of children are going to be very difficult. And it does lead young people to have a legitimate question: Is it OK to still have children?" she said.

The co-sponsor of a "Green New Deal" resolution making its way through the House and Senate, Ocasio-Cortez said time was of the essence to address how to reverse the effects of global warming within the 12-year timeline estimated by the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change report last fall.

"We had time when I was born, but - ticktock - nothing got done. As the youngest member of Congress, I wish we didn't have 12 years. It's our lungs that are going to get choked with wildfire smoke. ... Climate delayers are the new climate deniers," said the 29-year-old lawmaker said on Instagram.

The lawmaker has made climate change a key initiative of hers.

Since taking her seat in January she has pushed for a climate change-focused House select committee and later introduced a Green New Deal resolution in the House that aims to move the country toward 100 percent renewable energy usage by 2030.

Climate change has also become a key initiative for a number of 2020 Democratic presidential candidates who see the topic as a key issue for younger constituents.

The Green New Deal movement has been pushed in large part by the youth activist group the Sunrise Movement, that Monday lead a protest inside Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell's (R-Ky.) office to get him on board with the initiative.

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