AUSTIN - Today, President Trump abandoned the United States’ commitment to reducing pollution under the Paris Climate Agreement. This action increases the risks that the world will face from global warming – including dirtier air, water and food shortages, spreading disease, increasingly extreme weather, and loss of land mass to flooding.
Under the previous president, the country began making progress in reducing pollution. Now President Trump's actions threaten to take the country in the wrong direction.
Luke Metzger, Director of Environment Texas, made the following statement in response:
“When the nations of the world joined in the Paris accord, we all finally stood as one to begin to address the climate crisis. This embarrassing decision says to the world that the United States – the nation most responsible for global warming – feels no responsibility for cutting pollution, and pretends to prioritize the economy over the wellbeing of the world.
President Trump has got it exactly backwards: there’s no sound economy in our future without a healthy planet. If national leadership chooses to ignore that reality, then local governments, businesses and institutions must step in to fill the leadership void to show the world that Americans will do our part to address the climate crisis.
Averting disaster would be easier with strong federal leadership, but it’s not too late to defend clean air and a livable climate. If President Trump won’t stick by the U.S. commitment to reduce pollution, then our states, cities and industries must do so.
Hundreds of cities in the United States and around the world have pledged to accelerate carbon reductions to meet the goals of the Paris accord. Georgetown, Texas is just one of the dozens of cities planning to shift to 100% clean renewable energy. And ERCOT, which operates the electric grid for most of Texas, forecasts that even without federal environmental requirements, Texas will see “a significant amount of solar generation additions and the retirement of coal and natural gas generation."
Every city and every state in the country must step up and take similar action. And clear-eyed players in the business community must lead on this issue as well.
To accelerate progress, we are calling on more Texas cities, including Austin and San Antonio, to follow Georgetown’s lead and go 100% renewable. And we’re calling the University of Texas to demonstrate climate leadership by cutting global warming pollution from more than 9,000 oil and gas wells on land owned by the University.
In Washington, D.C., Congress must act to protect vital pollution-cutting programs -- including clean car standards and clean air standards -- from any attack.
We must all work together to reduce and eliminate the pollution that is causing the world to warm. Our families’ health and the future of the world ecosystem are at stake.”