GHG Emissions  -  June 9, 2017

Fortune 500s declare commitment to Paris targets

A total of 1,219 governors, mayors, businesses, investors, and colleges and universities from across the U.S. or with significant operations in the U.S. on June 5 declared their intent to continue to ensure that the U.S. remains a global leader in reducing carbon emissions. 

The coalition of leaders arguably represent the broadest cross-section of the American economy yet assembled in pursuit of climate action. In an open letter issued to the international community and parties to the Paris Agreement, the group intends to communicate to the international community and the 194 other parties to the Paris Agreement the continued commitment of the U.S. to ambitious action on climate change absent leadership at the federal level. 

Signatories from the private sector account for a total annual revenue of $1.4 trillion and include more than 20 Fortune 500 companies, including Apple, eBay, Gap Inc., Google, Intel, Microsoft and Nike, in addition to hundreds of small businesses, according to a news release. The full list of signatories is available here

Signatories also include leaders from 125 cities, 9 states, 902 businesses and investors, and 183 colleges and universities. Participating cities and states represent 120 million Americans and contribute $6.2 trillion to the U.S. economy, and include Oregon and cities like New York, Los Angeles, and Houston as well as smaller cities like Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and Dubuque, Iowa. A mixture of private universities, state schools and community colleges, both small and large, have added their institutions to the statement.

The letter was coordinated by The American Sustainable Business Council, B Team, Bloomberg Philanthropies, Center for American Progress, Ceres, CDP, Climate Mayors, Climate Nexus, C40, C2ES, Environmental Defense Fund, Environmental Entrepreneurs, Georgetown Climate Center, ICLEI, National League of Cities, Rocky Mountain Institute, Second Nature, Sierra Club, The Climate Group, We Mean Business and World Wildlife Fund. 

"The Trump administration's announcement [one that] undermines a key pillar in the fight against climate change [and a move which is] out of step with what is happening in the United States," the letter reads.

In addition to the statement, since President Trump's announcement to withdraw from the Paris Agreement, 211 Climate Mayors have adopted the Paris Agreement goals for their cities, 13 Governors have formed the bipartisan U.S. Climate Alliance, and 17 governors have released individual statements standing by Paris. Today’s statement embraces this rapidly growing movement of subnational and civil society leaders, by announcing that not only are these leaders stepping forward, they are stepping forward together.

"Today's statement embraces this rapidly growing movement of subnational and civil society leaders, by announcing that not only are these leaders stepping forward, they are stepping forward together," the coordinators said in a news release. 

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