Fed Up with the Federal Government, States Form Climate Alliance

It’s the two year anniversary of the US government pulling out of the Paris Agreement, but all hope is not lost. Many states and local governments have stepped up and committed to uphold their commitment to fight climate change.

The US Climate Alliance

The US Climate Alliance is, in their own words, “…a bipartisan coalition of 24 governors committed to reducing greenhouse gas emissions consistent with the goals of the Paris Agreement. The Alliance represents 55 percent of the U.S. population and an $11.7 trillion economy – an economy larger than all countries but the United States and China.” And states are still joining – this April, Nevada and Pennsylvania became the 23rd and 24th states to join the alliance.

The states in the alliance have not only cut their carbon emissions by 14% from 2005-2016, they also saw an economic benefit. These same states saw a 16% growth in economic output, as compared to the national average of 14%.

Coastal Communities and Cities Lead the Charge

Climate Change may seem like a distant or nonexistent threat to some, but many of the country’s largest populations are on the coast. According to NOAA, as of 2010 39% of America’s population lived in coastal areas. These communities have been increasingly active on the issue of climate change. Florida’s newly elected governor Desantis has made climate change a top priority – a big pivot from the state’s Department of Environmental Protection banning the term “climate change” just four years ago.

New York City and Boston have already accepted that climate change is happening and will have a huge impact on them, and both cities have ongoing initiatives to prepare. Boston also hosted an International Mayors Climate Summit, where mayors from around the world met to share ideas on effective climate action. Locally, cities like Everett are choosing to buy solar credits to offset their municipal carbon footprint and save money.

The key to solving climate change is not looking to come in time from the federal level. It’s up to local action to get us where we need to be – taking individual action and, crucially, voting in local elections will determine our success in tackling climate change.


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