The fight against climate change now falls on state legislators
On June 1, President Donald Trump made the wrong decision for our health and the planet by pulling the United States out of the Paris Climate Agreement. Climate change threatens our health with dirtier air, more extreme weather and spreading disease. The United States is the nation most responsible for global warming, and now we’re leaving other countries to clean up our mess or suffer the consequences. We’re telling the world that our nation is willing to risk all of our futures just for the sake of a few polluting industries. The United States should be the leading nation in fighting climate change and promoting clean renewable energy.
But losing Paris won’t only compromise our nation’s position in the international arena. Casting aside our emissions goals could have serious consequences right here in California.
To highlight some effects, a report produced by CALmatters found that California’s coastal sea level will actually rise 30 to 40 times faster — up to 10 feet in just 70 years — if nothing is done to address climate change. During California’s 2015 drought, the most severe dry period in over 450 years, over 20,000 agricultural jobs were lost. Furthermore, the American Lung Association reports that eight of the top 10 U.S. cities with the most particulate air pollution are in California.
If Washington won’t lead, we all need to step up. It’s time for our state legislators to lead California to a 10 percent renewable energy future. It’s time for Governor Jerry Brown and Senate President Pro Tempore Kevin de León to stand up and defend important climate-friendly measures like the clean car standards that will clean our air and conserve oil.
Written by: Shanti Ezrine