President Trump has announced that he will withdraw the U.S. from the Paris Agreement on climate change. Paris Mayor and C40 Chair Anne Hidalgo and several other global C40 mayors have made statements reacting to the news, vowing to continue taking action on climate change.
Despite the news, U.S. cities can still play a role in delivering on the Paris Agreement. As I mentioned previously, the report, How U.S. Cities Will Get the Job Done, concludes that U.S. cities can contribute more than 1/3 of the emissions reductions needed by 2025 to meet the US commitment under the Paris Agreement, C40 spokesperson Tana Bosshard has informed in a message early Friday.
“Climate change is real: it poses a unique threat to the future of our planet, and puts in peril the health, prosperity, security and the very survival of our children and grandchildren. The scientific evidence is undeniable and beyond doubt. 2016 was the hottest year globally since temperature records began and 16 of the planet’s 17 hottest years on record have occurred in the 21st century.
The effects of climate disruption are already being felt in the great cities of the world, from hurricanes in New Orleans and New York, floods in Paris, Houston and Montreal, deadly heatwaves in Sydney, to toxic air pollution in Beijing, New Delhi and in all large cities. This explains why more than 190 nations decided to sign the Paris Agreement on Climate Change in 2015.
That incredible diplomatic achievement could not have been secured without the decisive role of the United States of America. That is why it is a dramatic mistake for President Trump to pull the US out of the Paris Agreement. Given below are statements of mayors of leading cities of the world
As the C40 Chair, a network of ninety-one of the world’s major cities committed to tackling climate change, and as the Mayor of Paris, I urge the US Administration to reconsider their decision. The next four years will be crucial in determining if the worst effects of climate change can be avoided. American leadership on this urgent challenge is needed now more than ever.
Regardless of President Trump’s decision, the great cities of the world, in particular the twelve American C40 cities, remain resolutely committed to doing what needs to be done to implement the Paris Agreement.
Not a single day goes by without C40 mayors on every continent making bold and pioneering choices, serving citizens of the future. We will be relentless. The evidence and urgency of the climate crisis as well as the economic potential in shifting towards a greener future, leaves us no alternative.”
Mayor of Paris & C40 Chair
“What’s heartbreaking is the damage governments can do in a short time when they’re in power. But where national action falters, as we see in the USA tonight, we see more and more city governments stepping up to provide the leadership we urgently need.
This summer broke countless heat records in Sydney, we’ve seen coral bleaching in the harbour and the clock is ticking on climate change. We want governments working with our cities, supporting us, having policies of their own – but if not, we need them to get out of the way and let us do what has to be done.
In Sydney we’ve reduced energy use from street lighting by nearly 45 per cent by replacing them with energy saving LEDs; installed solar photovoltaic panels and hot water systems on our City-owned buildings; delivered a zero increase in emissions from our fleet of vehicles since 2014; planted more than 11,000 new street trees since 2005 to absorb pollution and provide shade; and harvested and treated 590 million litres of stormwater through a water reuse system at Sydney Park.
I returned from a meeting of C40 city leaders in Mexico City last year with a renewed sense of the scale and urgency of the climate challenge – the next four years are crucial for any realistic chance of meeting the Paris agreement. We have now delivered a City budget that takes tough decisions to reprioritise funding to increased climate action – including a net zero buildings competition, expanded programs in commercial offices, accommodation and entertainment, and apartments, and reductions in our own emissions.”
Lord Mayor of Sydney
“The decision taken by President Trump will not mark a setback in the fight of Milano against climate change.
We will honour our commitment. It is our duty to take all available measures to ensure a better quality of life for our citizens.
Milano shall keep on working in the framework of the Paris Agreement”.
Mayor of Milan
“As the Mayor of Stockholm, a city with healthy and prosperous economic growth and decreasing carbon emissions, I would like to express my strong support and solidarity with all U.S cities as you work to aggressively fight climate change and improve the health and well-being of your communities and your local economies. I will stand by your side as we, as Mayors, will continue the fight against climate change together.”
Mayor of Stockholm
President Trump’s announcement to pull the US out of the Paris Accord is a tremendous setback for international cooperation. The US President leaves the responsibility to Europe and the rest of the world. The C40 cities will step up efforts to ensure that cities across the world deliver on the agreed targets to fight climate change.
Governing Mayor of Oslo
“Cities are at the forefront of fighting climate change, building cleaner, healthier and more resilient communities. Vancouver has the fastest growing, most diverse economy in Canada, and at the same time we’re successfully cutting our climate pollution. We’re attracting world-leading businesses and top talent thanks in part to our focus on building a 100% renewably-powered future. I stand in solidarity with U.S. Mayors as they continue working to achieve the goals of the Paris Agreement, regardless of the reckless actions against climate at the federal level.”
Mayor of Vancouver
“Austin will not stop fighting climate change. Worldwide, cities will lead in achieving climate treaty goals because so much of what’s required happens at the local level. Regardless of what happens around us, we’re still Austin, Texas.”
Mayor of Austin, Texas
“We will continue to work together as Mayors from around the world to save our planet for future generations. We pledge our solidarity and stand with our American Mayors, regardless of whether they are democrats or republican and we will continue working with them to save the planet.”
Patricia de Lille
Mayor of Cape Town