MD among 19 attorneys general saying "We are Still In" Paris Accord

Posted at 8:01 AM, Jun 06, 2017
and last updated 2017-06-06 08:01:02-04

Maryland Attorney General Brian Frosh and 18 other attorneys general have joined the "We are Still In" Coalition, pledging to stay committed to fighting climate change and will continue to follow the principles of the Paris Climate Agreement.

Last week President Donald Trump announced the U.S. will withdraw from the accord, making America one of three countries not committed to the agreement.

The 19 state attorneys general joining the coalition include: Xavier Becerra, California Attorney General; George Jepsen, Connecticut Attorney General; Matt Denn, Delaware Attorney General; Karl A. Racine, District of Columbia Attorney General; Doug S. Chin, Hawaii Attorney General; Lisa Madigan, Illinois Attorney General; Tom Miller, Iowa Attorney General; Janet E. Mills, Maine Attorney General; Brian E. Frosh, Maryland Attorney General; Maura Healey, Massachusetts Attorney General; Lori Swanson, Minnesota Attorney General; Hector Balderas, New Mexico Attorney General; Eric T. Schneiderman, New York Attorney General; Josh Stein, North Carolina Attorney General; Ellen F. Rosenblum, Oregon Attorney Genera; Josh Shapiro, Pennsylvania Attorney General; Peter F. Kilmartin, Rhode Island Attorney General; Thomas J. Donovan Jr., Vermont Attorney General; and Mark R. Herring, Virginia Attorney General.

The attorneys general join dozens of governors, mayors, business leaders and university leaders from across the country. They pledge to be leaders in reducing greenhouse gas emissions and slowing global warming.

The "We are Still In" Coalition released a statement:

“We, the undersigned mayors, governors, attorneys general, college and university leaders and businesses are joining forces for the first time to declare, that we will continue to support climate action to meet the Paris Agreement.
In December 2015 in Paris, world leaders signed the first global commitment to fight climate change. The landmark agreement succeeded where past attempts failed because it allowed each country to set its own emission reduction targets and adopt its own strategies for reaching them. In addition, nations – inspired by the actions of local and regional governments, along with businesses – came to recognize that fighting climate change brings significant economic and public health benefits.
The Trump administration’s announcement undermines a key pillar in the fight against climate change and damages the world’s ability to avoid the most dangerous and costly effects of climate change. Importantly, it is also out of step with what is happening in the United States.
In the U.S., it is local and state governments, along with businesses, that are primarily responsible for the dramatic decrease in greenhouse gas emissions in recent years. Actions by each group will multiply and accelerate in the years ahead, no matter what policies Washington may adopt.
In the absence of leadership from Washington, states, cities, colleges and universities and businesses representing a sizeable percentage of the U.S. economy will pursue ambitious climate goals, working together to take forceful action and to ensure that the U.S. remains a global leader in reducing emissions.
It is imperative that the world know that in the U.S., the actors that will provide the leadership necessary to meet our Paris commitment are found in city halls, state capitals, colleges and universities and businesses. Together, we will remain actively engaged with the international community as part of the global effort to hold warming to well below 2°C and to accelerate the transition to a clean energy economy that will benefit our security, prosperity, and health.”

The Paris Climate Agreement requires participating countries to limit global warming to well below 3.6 degrees Fahrenheit from preindustrial levels and encourages them to pursue efforts to keep temperature increases to 2.7 degrees Fahrenheit.