Sunday, 25 June, 2017

Mayors of Pittsburgh and Paris Say They Have Their Own Climate Deal

Darrell Mcdonald | 14 June, 2017, 06:48

Hawaii will become the first state to ignore President Donald Trump's exit from the Paris climate accord by signing two bills keeping the state in line with the goals and limits set by the agreement.

David Ige signed two bills yesterday (June 6) to enforce parts of the Paris Agreement-making Hawaii the first state to take concrete action in support of the global climate agreement. The bill, known as SB 559, seeks to broaden the state's methods to decrease carbon emissions and air pollution; the act states that these strategies "shall be closely aligned with the climate change principles and goals adopted in the Paris Agreement and Hawaii's share of obligations within the expectations apportioned to the United States in the Paris Agreement, regardless of federal action". He says he was motivated by the signs of climate change he sees daily in Hawaii: "Tides are getting higher, biodiversity is shrinking, coral is bleaching, coastlines are eroding, weather is becoming more extreme". "Together, we can directly contribute to the global agenda of achieving a more resilient and sustainable island Earth". Another bill establishes a "Carbon Farming Task Force", which will evaluate agriculture and aquaculture practices for improved soil health and carbon sequestration.

Immediately following Mr Trump's unprecedented move, three state governors created the US Climate Alliance which pledged to uphold their obligations under the Paris agreement.

A similar agreement has been made by mayors across the United States.

Fortunately for anyone who cares about the environmental health of the planet and actually takes climate change seriously ― rather than, say, believing it's a Chinese hoax, or that the other Paris signatories were only happy with the deal because it screwed over the US ― the long, slow withdrawal process means this could still be a viable issue in a 2020 presidential campaign. And through C40 Cities, the global network of 91 cities, of which I, Mayor Hidalgo, serve as chairwoman, mayors representing 650 million citizens are pledging their determination to deliver on the Paris Agreement.

With Trump's withdrawal, the USA joins Syria and Nicaragua as countries in the United Nations climate group not on board with the Paris climate accord.

In his written testimony, Comey described a March 30 phone call where he said that Trump stressed "the cloud" of the Russian Federation investigations was "interfering with his ability to make deals for the country and said he hoped I could find a way to get out that he wasn't being investigated".

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