Climate change is real: it poses a unique threat to the future of our planet, and puts in peril the health, prosperity, security and the very survival of our children and grandchildren. The scientific evidence is undeniable and beyond doubt. 2016 was the hottest year globally since temperature records began and 16 of the planet’s 17 hottest years on record have occurred in the 21st century.
The effects of climate disruption are already being felt in the great cities of the world, from hurricanes in New Orleans and New York, floods in Paris, Houston and Montreal, deadly heatwaves in Sydney, to toxic air pollution in Beijing, New Delhi and in all large cities. This explains why more than 190 nations decided to sign the Paris Agreement on Climate Change in 2015.
That incredible diplomatic achievement could not have been secured without the decisive role of the United States of America. That is why it is a dramatic mistake for President Trump to pull the US out of the Paris Agreement.
As the C40 Chair, a network of ninety-one of the world’s major cities committed to tackling climate change, and as the Mayor of Paris, I urge the US Administration to reconsider their decision.The next four years will be crucial in determining if the worst effects of climate change can be avoided. American leadership on this urgent challenge is needed now more than ever.
Regardless of Donald Trump’s definitive decision, the great cities of the world, in particular the twelve American C40 cities, remain resolutely committed to doing what needs to be done to implement the Paris Agreement.
Not a single day goes by without C40 mayors on every continent making bold and pioneering choices, serving citizens of the future: we will be relentless. The evidence and urgency of the climate crisis as well as the economic potential in shifting towards a greener future, leaves us no alternative.
Anne Hidalgo, Mayor of Paris & C40 Chair