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Grand Rapids, Traverse City mayors pledge to fight climate change

In the aftermath of President Trump withdrawing from the Paris Climate Agreement, 12 Michigan mayors join a growing list of leaders from around the nation in a commitment to adopt, honor, and uphold its goals.

On Thursday, June 1st, President Donald Trump announced that the United States would begin the process of withdrawing from the Paris Climate Agreement despite bipartisan political and overwhelming public support. As a result, seven Michigan mayors bucked the president’s message by lending their signatures to a pledge from the Mayors National Climate Action Agenda.

A statement from the organization reads,

As 180 US Mayors representing 51 million Americans, we will adopt, honor, and uphold the commitments to the goals enshrined in the Paris Agreement. We will intensify efforts to meet each of our cities’ current climate goals, push for new action to meet the 1.5 degrees Celsius target, and work together to create a 21st century clean energy economy.

We will continue to lead. We are increasing investments in renewable energy and energy efficiency. We will buy and create more demand for electric cars and trucks. We will increase our efforts to cut greenhouse gas emissions, create a clean energy economy, and stand for environmental justice. And if the President wants to break the promises made to our allies enshrined in the historic Paris Agreement, we’ll build and strengthen relationships around the world to protect the planet from devastating climate risks. The world cannot wait — and neither will we.

Friday afternoon, Grand Rapids Mayor Rosalynn Bliss said on Facebook that she would add her signature. “This morning, I joined mayors from around the country in reaffirming our commitment to addressing climate change. As a city, we remain dedicated to getting to 100 percent renewable energy by 2025.”

Traverse City Mayor Jim Carruthers also took to Facebook on Friday to pledge his support and express dismay that the United States was not honoring its agreement on climate change with international partners. “Because of the action taken today by our President, I feel it important to maintain agreements we’ve made with our World partners as it relates to Climate Change. I’ve added my name, as Mayor, joining many others across this great nation in support of those relationships. We must protect our Mother Earth.”

In December, Traverse City Commissioners voted unanimously to approve a resolution outlining how the city would power all city services with renewable energy by 2020. Mayor Carruthers explained that “it seems like one of the right things to do with a changing climate and changing aspects of our energy production.”

Michigan is already feeling the effects of climate change and it only looks to get worse.

Current signatories from Michigan (as of 3 a.m. June 5):

  • Mayor Christopher Taylor
    City of Ann Arbor, MI
  • Mayor Brenda Hess
    City of Buchanan, MI
  • Mayor Mike Duggan
    City of Detroit, MI
  • Mayor David Coulter
    City of Ferndale, MI
  • Mayor Karen Weaver
    City of Flint, MI
  • Mayor Rosalyn Bliss
    City of Grand Rapids, MI
  • Mayor Karen Majewski
    City of Hamtramck, MI
  • Mayor William Sprague
    City of Lapeer, MI
  • Mayor Daniel Guzzi
    City of Rockwood, MI
  • Mayor Mike Fournier
    City of Royal Oak, MI
  • Mayor Jim Carruthers
    Traverse City, MI
  • Mayor Amanda Maria Edmonds
    City of Ypsilanti, MI

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