Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti last November rallied 71 U.S. mayors, whose cities are homes to tens of millions of people, to sign an open letter calling on Donald Trump, then the president-elect, to honor the Paris Accord, which aims to reduce greenhouse gases and stem the effects of climate change. Now, as the president prepares to trigger an exit from the agreement, they––a list which includes the mayors of New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Houston, Philadelphia, and Phoenix––have doubled down on their pledge to “forge ahead even in the absence of federal support.”
Garcetti voiced his support for cities independently abiding by the agreement earlier last month.
If the White House withdraws from the Paris climate accord, we’re going to adopt it in Los Angeles. #CAPIdeas
In a series of tweets, New York City Mayor Bill DeBlasio announced he will sign an “executive order maintaining New York City’s commitment to the Paris Agreement” on climate change after reports yesterday indicated Trump would withdraw from it.
President Trump should know that climate change is a dagger aimed straight at the heart of New York City.
Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel condemned what he called an “alarming” decision to “ignore the consensus of 194 countries and the scientific community.”
“Chicago will not skirt our responsibility to act,” he said in a statement. “We will work with cities around the country to reduce our emissions in accordance with the Paris Agreement, and urge President Trump to keep our nation’s commitment as well.”
Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed also criticized the decision, cautioning that withdrawing from the agreement would cause the nation to lose its role as a global leader. He said Atlanta would remain committed to the goals of the climate agreement, including efforts to reduce carbon emissions and find clean energy solutions.
“This decision isolates our country from international partners in shared, global efforts to curb climate change, and at its core is an assault on our future stability and prosperity,” he said.
Boston Mayor Martin Walsh urged the Trump administration not to withdraw from the agreement while pledging that the city would maintain its commitment to clean air and water.
“If this administration turns its back to the environment, cities like Boston will have to step up,” Walsh said at a City Hall news conference. “As a coastal city, we know what’s at stake. The city of Boston will not back down. We’re going to continue to invest in clean energy and create jobs.”
City leaders are not alone in their efforts. A host of leaders within government, the scientific community, universities, and the private business sector have also expressed concern over the rumored move.