US States, Cities and Businesses Lead the Way on Climate Action, Under2 Coalition Adds 10 New Members
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Ten new members have recently joined the Under2 Coalition, bringing the total number of jurisdictions in the Under2 Coalition to 187, representing more than 1.2 billion people and US$28.8 trillion in gross domestic product (GDP).

The NewClimate Institute and The Climate Group issued a report titled, ‘States, cities and businesses leading the way: a first look at decentralized climate commitments in the US,’ which shows that US states, cities and businesses are leading the way in helping the US meet its climate commitments under the Paris Agreement on climate change.

18 September 2017: Announcements made and publications released during Climate Week NYC 2017 indicate that subnational climate actions and commitments continue to increase. The Under2 Coalition has added 10 new members, bringing the total number of participant jurisdictions to 187. A report issued by the NewClimate Institute and The Climate Group demonstrates that federal states, cities and business are taking the lead on climate action in the US.

Ten new members have joined the Under2 Coalition, including: the Marshall Islands; Mozambique; Queensland, Australia; US cities of Atlanta, Boulder, Orlando and Pittsburgh, and Montgomery County in Maryland; and the German states of Lower Saxony and Rhineland-Platinate. This brings the total number of jurisdictions in the Under2 Coalition to 187, representing more than 1.2 billion people and US$28.8 trillion in gross domestic product (GDP).

The Under2 Coalition is committed to limiting the global temperature rise to below 2°C above preindustrial levels, and to limiting greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions to 2 tons per capita or reducing them by 80-95% below 1990 levels, by 2050.

The Under2 Coalition, formed in 2015 by the states of California, US, and Baden-Württemberg, Germany, is a coalition of national and subnational governments committed to limiting the global temperature rise to below 2°C above preindustrial levels, and to limiting greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions to 2 tons per capita or reducing them by 80-95% below 1990 levels, by 2050. [State of California Press Release on Under2 Coalition] [Under2 Coalition]

US states, cities and businesses are leading the way in helping the US meet its climate commitments under the Paris Agreement on climate change, according to a report published by the NewClimate Institute and The Climate Group. The report concludes that the US can meet half of its climate pledge by 2025 if the 342 commitments from 22 US states, 54 cities and 250 US-based businesses are implemented.

Titled ‘States, cities and businesses leading the way: a first look at decentralized climate commitments in the US,’ the report aims to quantify emission reductions by these entities and explains that larger states, such as New York, California and Colorado, are contributing the most to projected emission reductions due to their leadership and size. The report notes that US states alone deliver more than two thirds of total estimated emission reductions, cities are the most ambitious in implementing emission reduction targets, and business are setting the most ambitious emission reduction goals over the next ten years.

During the report’s launch, which took place on 18 September 2017 during the opening ceremony of Climate Week NYC, Helen Clarkson, CEO, The Climate Group, stated that states, cities and business “will not waiver in their climate commitment,” regardless of the US administration’s decision to withdraw from the Paris Agreement, and that they have “the power to mitigate the consequences” of the withdrawal. Niklas Höhne, NewClimate Institute, noted that the report might even underestimate the impact of cities, states and businesses since many actions are yet to be recorded or quantified.

The Climate Group serves as the Secretariat for the Under2 Coalition. [New Climate Institute Press Release] [Publication Landing Page] [States, cities and businesses leading the way: a first look at decentralized climate commitments in the US]


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