MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – Minnesota has joined to a newly-formed coalition of U.S. states dedicated to upholding the Paris Climate Accord and combating climate change.
The U.S. Climate Alliance formed last week after President Donald Trump announced that he was withdrawing the U.S. from the international agreement that sought to reduce the effects of climate change on the world.
“I am very pleased to announce that Minnesota will join the U.S. Climate Alliance, to uphold the tenets of the Paris Climate Change Agreement in our state,” Gov. Mark Dayton said, in a statement. “President Trump’s withdrawal will cause serious damage to our environment and our economy.”
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The founding members of the U.S. Climate Alliance were the governors of Washington, New York and California. On Monday, Washington Gov. Jay Inslee announced that 10 other states, including Minnesota, had joined the alliance.
According to Inslee, the alliance is committed to helping the U.S. reduce greenhouse gas emissions 26-28 percent from 2005 levels, thereby meeting or exceeding the targets of the federal Clean Power Plan.
As a member in the alliance, Minnesota is committed to sustaining climate programs, promoting the sharing of innovations and best practices with other member states, and implementing new programs to help reduce greenhouse gases in all areas.
The other states in the coalition are New York, Washington, California, Connecticut, Delaware, Hawaii, Massachusetts, Oregon, Puerto Rico, Rhode Island, Vermont and Virginia.
In his Thursday announcement on pulling the U.S. out of the Paris agreement, the president said that the climate accord was more about giving other nations a “financial advantage” over the U.S. than it is about the environment.
In response, former President Barack Obama, who initially entered the U.S. in the accord, said Trump’s move positioned the country not as the leader of the industrial world but of “a small handful of nations that reject the future.”
In Minnesota, Dayton quickly called the president’s decision “terrible for our state, nation and world,” adding that it will cause “irreparable damage to our environment and our economy.”