Calif. Gov and Bloomberg Leading New Climate Pledge

America’s Pledge will record and track city, business and state commitments and measure their cumulative effect on reducing greenhouse emissions.



By Kathleen Ronayne

SACRAMENTO, CALIF. — California Gov. Jerry Brown announced yet another plan Wednesday to keep the United States on track to reduce greenhouse gas emissions under the international Paris climate agreement.

This time, he’s teaming up with former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg to launch “America’s Pledge,” an initiative to compile all of the climate change-fighting commitments of states, cities, businesses and universities in one place where they can be easily tracked and shared.

It’s the latest effort by cities and states — and Brown in particular — to fight back against President Donald Trump’s decision to withdraw the United States from the international pact. The two will share the data at this year’s United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, held in Germany.

Brown, a Democrat, and Bloomberg, a Republican-turned Independent, have both played an outsized role on the world stage when it comes to fighting global warming.

Brown is serving as a special adviser to states and regions at the Germany gathering, while Bloomberg was appointed a special envoy for cities and climate change in 2014 by U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon.

“In the U.S., emission levels are determined far more by cities, states, and businesses than they are by our federal government - and each of these groups is taking action because it’s in their own best interest,” Bloomberg said in a statement.

Under former President Barack Obama, the country committed to reducing greenhouse gas emissions 26 to 28 percent below 2005 levels by 2025.

Governors, mayors and other leaders have pledged to uphold that target even without the White House’s commitment. Brown is at the helm of several multi-state pacts to lower carbon emissions.

The new pledge will record and track those individual commitments and measure their cumulative effect on reducing emissions. The Rocky Mountain Institute and the World Resources Institute will lead the analysis for the project, paid for by grants from Bloomberg Philanthropies. Antha Williams, director of the foundation’s environment program, could not provide an estimated cost of the America’s Pledge research. Bloomberg’s foundation has spent more than $100 million on climate initiatives.

The project will also present a “game plan” for non-federal actors to take more aggressive action on climate.

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