The open letter from the #ClimateMayors on Medium.com continues to gain signatories – now up to 210***! These cities and their metropolitan areas now count for over 49% of the US population, and 55% of our GDP. That’s nearly $10 TRILLION!! Is your city on the list? If not, and you think it should be, now is the time to start calling your city council and your mayor’s office! Even better if you’re a business owner…
But even more exciting was the massive influx of states into the U.S. Climate Alliance. Added to the previous 9 states (Colorado was misreported), Minnesota, Delaware, Vermont and Puerto Rico, joined on Monday bringing the total to 13. These 12 states contain over 30% of the US population, and are responsible for over 35% (over 1/3!) of the U.S. Gross Domestic Product.
And this brings us to my favorite part – what happens when you combine the states in the Climate Alliance to the cities that have signed the Climate Mayors agreement and aren’t in the Climate Alliance member states? Well, its a pretty rosy picture – 58.8% of the US population, and almost 2/3 of the GDP!
This is all well and good, but it can’t stop here – there’s still an alarming portion of Americans who are not living in states or municipalities that have signed on to the Paris Climate Agreement. Obviously, I believe every state and city should sign on, but clearly some places will have more political, economic, and of course, environmental impact.
The top 10 State producers of C02 are listed in the chart below. Now, California and New York are founding members of the U.S. Climate Alliance so we don’t need to worry about them, and some states are certainly an uphill battle, if not a lost cause (Texas, I’m looking at you), but there are some other states which absolutely could, and should, be convinced to join. For example, Florida and Louisiana stand to lose the most in the near future from Climate Change, as their most prosperous urban areas are already under threat of flooding from rising sea levels, and both states are routinely victims of hurricanes, which will only become more frequent and more powerful as the earth’s atmosphere warms. Pennsylvania and Michigan have had the majority of their major urban areas already sign on to the #ClimateMayors agreement, and Pennsylvania has already expressed some interest, and somewhat surprisingly, so has Ohio.
***They claim 211, but they’re counting the city of Carrboro, NC twice!)