Speaking at the C40 Mayors Summit in Mexico City, mayors from cities across the U.S. have urged President-elect Donald Trump to recognize what they call a “real and urgent threat” that climate change poses to the world’s cities.
In addition, they have called on Trump for support as they enact policies and programs to combat climate change.
Drawing on a new C40 research report, “How U.S. Cities Will Get The Job Done,” the mayors of Washington, D.C.; Portland, Ore.; Austin, Texas; Seattle; and Phoenix have revealed that the 12 U.S. cities that are members of the C40 network have already taken nearly 2,400 individual actions to respond to climate change in the past decade.
“The science hasn’t changed. The urgency hasn’t changed,” says Boston Mayor Martin J. Walsh, vice chair of C40. “As mayors of cities at the frontlines of climate change, we have a continued responsibility to carry forward solutions – even more so today than yesterday.”
The report also reveals that if all U.S. cities follow the lead shown by these C40 cities and pursue deep, rapid emissions reductions, by 2025, cities would contribute more than one-third of the emissions reductions needed to meet the U.S.’ commitments to the Paris Agreement. In addition, the research also finds that one in five Americans now lives in a C40 city. (The full list of cities in the group can be found here.)
“Mayors don’t look at climate change as an ideological issue. They look at it as an economic and public health issue,” says former New York City Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg, C40’s president of the board and U.N. Secretary General’s Special Envoy for Cities and Climate Change. “Regardless of the decisions of the incoming administration, U.S. mayors will continue to deliver action and lead the way.”
“One election doesn’t change who we are in cities in America,” adds Muriel Bowser, mayor of Washington, D.C. “As mayors and citizens, we are determined to lead the way on facing the climate crisis.”
“We hope that President-elect Trump can be convinced to join us in providing this global leadership city leaders cross America are already showing,” says Charlie Hales, mayor of Portland. “But if he doesn’t, we will not be slowed down, with or without the support of the White House. The risks of not acting are just too severe.”