This OTYCD entry originally posted in June 2017.
Learn what you, personally, can do to uphold the spirit of the Paris agreement on climate change.
On June 1, 2017, Trump announced that the United States would exit the Paris climate accord, making it one of just three nations–the others are Nicaragua and Syria–of 198 to sit it out. [As of October 2018, the United States was the sole country that did not officially support it.] The Paris agreement calls for every nation to set goals to curtail its carbon emissions in the hopes of slowing or stopping the warming trend that climate scientists have documented. The U.S.’s individual goal was to reduce emissions between 26 and 28 percent from its 2005 levels by 2025.
Here’s just some of the things that you can do to push back against this short-sighted decision:
Call your members of Congress. But before you do, check their websites and social media and see where they stand on the issue.
Are they pushing back? Then thank them and tell them you support their actions.
Have they said nothing? Urge them to come out against Trump’s decision.
Are they for it? Say you have noticed their statements in favor and urge them to change their minds. If they refuse, prepare to spend time and money to get their opponents elected the next time they run for re-election, and tell them so.
Join the Sierra Club and sign up for its newsletter. They’re on top of environmental stuff in general and have done excellent work showing how ordinary citizens can push back against Trump’s environment-harming stances.
Ask your state governor to join the United States Climate Alliance. Launched on June 1, it’s a group of state leaders who have committed to upholding the spirit of the Paris agreement.
As of June 2, its official members include: California, New York, Washington state, Connecticut, Vermont, Oregon, Hawaii, Rhode Island, and Massachusetts (this last has a Republican governor, btw). Collectively, these states represent just over 27 percent of the country’s population, 31 percent of its gross domestic product (GDP), and a little over 14 percent of its carbon dioxide emissions (as of 2014).
If you live in a city, ask your mayor or city council leader to join the Mayors National Climate Action Agenda. Founded in 2014, it counts 180 participating mayors as of June 2. Together, they represent about 51 million Americans.
Scan the list in this Medium story and see if your mayor is among them.
You can also support the Global Covenant of Mayors, which unites mayors the world over in combatting climate change (scroll down for its info).
Support former New York City mayor Michael Bloomberg’s efforts to nullify Trump’s wrongheaded decision. He’s forming and funding a larger group unites the efforts of the governors and mayors with those of business leaders and academic institutions. And on June 2, his self-named charity pledged to donate $15 million over two years to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change.
Learn more about the Paris accord, and about the consequences of leaving it:
Learn 10 things you can do to uphold the Paris accord, per the Sierra Club:
Read about the United States Climate Alliance:
Visit the web page for the Climate Mayors:
Visit the web page for the Global Covenant of Mayors:
Read about Michael Bloomberg’s efforts to step up and lead when Trump won’t:
Subscribe to One Thing You Can Do by clicking the button on the upper right of the page. And tell your friends about the blog!