FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
Thursday, June 18, 2015
Contact: Alex Barnum
California Welcomes States from Mexico and Nigeria to Growing Global Partnership to Fight Climate Change
SACRAMENTO–The State of California today welcomed new partner states from Mexico and Nigeria to a first-of-its-kind agreement, now spanning states and provinces across four continents, to limit global warming to less than 2 degrees Celsius by the end of the century.
Leaders of the Mexican state of Chiapas and Cross River State in Nigeria signed the “Under 2 MOU,” as the agreement is known, at the annual meeting of the Governors’ Climate and Forests Task Force in Barcelona. The agreement was first announced last month at an event in Sacramento hosted by Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr.
“By signing the Under 2 MOU, the State of Chiapas confirms its commitment to tackle climate change in our state,” said Chiapas Governor Manuel Velasco Coello. “California and Chiapas have collaborated in the past, and we continue to support efforts from subnational entities, as well as work on concrete actions on the ground.”
To date, 14 states and provinces have signed the Under 2 MOU. Collectively, the signatories span eight countries on four continents and represent more than $4.5 trillion in gross domestic product (GDP) and 109 million in population.
“The addition of Chiapas and Cross River State to our diverse and growing coalition demonstrates that a more ambitious approach to climate change is a goal shared by states across the world and across the economic spectrum,” said California Secretary of Environmental Protection Matthew Rodriquez. “We look forward to welcoming other partners in the months ahead.”
The agreement provides a template for the world’s nations to follow as work continues toward an international agreement to reduce greenhouse gas emissions ahead of this year’s United Nations Climate Change Conference in Paris.
In addition to California, the founding signatories of the Under 2 MOU include: Acre, Brazil; Baden-Württemberg, Germany; Baja California, Mexico; British Columbia, Canada; Catalonia, Spain; Jalisco, Mexico; Ontario, Canada; and Wales, UK. In the United States, the other founding signatories are Oregon, Vermont and Washington.
Under the agreement, the signatories commit to either reduce greenhouse gas emissions 80 to 95 percent below 1990 levels by 2050 or achieve a per capita annual emission target of less than 2 metric tons by 2050. These targets allow each individual government to tailor emission reduction plans to fit regional needs. The pact seeks to enhance cooperation to achieve these goals through a range of activities.