Cuomo Joins California, Washington State Governors To Launch United States Climate Alliance

ALBANY, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) — New York state Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced Thursday that he will join the governors of California and Washington state to form a new United States Climate Alliance – in the wake of President Donald Trump’s announcement that the U.S. will withdraw from the Paris climate accord.

Cuomo, California Gov. Jerry Brown, and Washington state Gov. Jay Inslee announced that the coalition will convene U.S. states committed to upholding the Paris Climate Agreement and taking action against climate change.

“The White House’s reckless decision to withdraw from the Paris Accord has devastating repercussions not only for the United States, but for our planet,” Cuomo said in a statement. “This administration is abdicating its leadership and taking a backseat to other countries in the global fight against climate change. New York State is committed to meeting the standards set forth in the Paris Accord regardless of Washington’s irresponsible actions. We will not ignore the science and reality of climate change, which is why I am also signing an Executive Order confirming New York’s leadership role in protecting our citizens, our environment, and our planet.”

The states of New York, California and Washington together represent more than one fifth of the U.S. Gross Domestic Product, and are committed to reducing emissions by 26 to 28 percent compared with 2005 levels – as well as meeting or exceeding the targets of the Federal Clean Power Plan.

“The President has already said climate change is a hoax, which is the exact opposite of virtually all scientific and worldwide opinion,” California Gov. Brown said in statement. “I don’t believe fighting reality is a good strategy – not for America, not for anybody. If the President is going to be AWOL in this profoundly important human endeavor, then California and other states will step up.”

“I am proud to stand with other governors as we make sure that the inaction in D.C. is met by an equal force of action from the states,” Washington Gov. Inslee said in the statement. “Today’s announcement by the president leaves the full responsibility of climate action on states and cities throughout our nation. While the president’s actions are a shameful rebuke to the work needed to protect our planet for our children and grandchildren, states have been and will continue to step up.”

Meanwhile, 61 mayors from across the U.S. – including Mayor Bill de Blasio – announced a pledge to adopt and uphold the Paris accord goals. Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel, Boston Mayor Martin Walsh, Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney, Seattle Mayor Ed Murray, Austin Mayor Steve Adler, and San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee were among the others who signed on.

In announcing the United States’ withdrawal from the Paris climate accord, President Trump said the deal was very unfair to America and “not what we need.” He characterized the Paris accord as a massive redistribution of wealth from the U.S. to other countries.

Trump said it will cost key jobs in the U.S. and send them overseas.

President insisted the accord puts the U.S. at a great disadvantage, and will cost the U.S. economy what he called a vast fortune.

“The cost to the economy is at this time would be $3 trillion in lost GDP and six and a half million industrial jobs,” Trump said.

But Trump said the U.S. will begin negotiations to reenter the accord on terms he said will be fair to the United States.

“We will see if we can make a deal that’s fair,” Trump said from the White House Rose Garden. “And, if we can, that’s great. And if we can’t, that’s fine.”

The 2015 agreement to fight global warming by reducing carbon emissions was signed by former President Barack Obama. But Trump said other nations will have an unfair advantage over the U.S.

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