Wednesday, July 8, 2015
Contact: Governor’s Press Office
Governor Brown Issues Call to Arms on Climate Change, Appeals to Other States and Provinces to Join the Fight
TORONTO – With the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Paris quickly approaching, Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr. today called on states and provinces to join California in the fight against climate change in keynote remarks at the Climate Summit of the Americas in Toronto.
“The real source of climate action has to come from states and provinces,” said Governor Brown, “This is a call to arms. We’re going to build up such a drumbeat that our national counterparts – they’re going to listen.”
Image: Governor Brown delivers remarks at the Climate Summit of the Americas
Under 2 MOU
Earlier in the day, Governor Brown joined founding signatories Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne and Washington Governor Jay Inslee to witness Quebec Premier Philippe Couillard sign the “Under 2 MOU,” a first-of-its-kind agreement amongst states and provinces around the world to limit the increase in global average temperature to below 2 degrees Celsius – the warming threshold at which scientists say there will likely be catastrophic climate disruptions.
“Quebec and California have been leaders in the development of the carbon market and Ontario is also putting a limit on the main sources of greenhouse gas pollution through a cap-and-trade system,” said Quebec Premier Philippe Couillard. “Quebec is also proud to have signed the Under 2 MOU today. With the concerted efforts of all federated states we will achieve concrete results in the fight against climate change.”
Image: Quebec Premier Philippe Couillard signs Under 2 MOU
The agreement, under which 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, was first signed by Governor Brown and other global leaders in May. Additional states and provinces signed onto the agreement in June and July and with the addition of Quebec – Canada’s largest and second most populous province – 18 states and provinces in nine countries and four continents have signed the agreement, collectively representing more than $5.3 trillion in GDP and 130 million people.
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.
“Throughout the Americas, states and provinces are taking the lead in the fight against climate change and creating new opportunities for trade, investment and growth,” said Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne. “The Climate Summit of the Americas is an important step on this journey, particularly as we look for meaningful national targets to be set at the UN Climate Conference in Paris this December. I want to thank Governor Brown for spearheading the Under 2 MOU initiative, for his participation in the Summit and for his continued leadership in the fight against climate change. His voice has been pivotal in urging other subnational and national governments to take action. Together, we are building a more prosperous low-carbon economy and demonstrating that good climate policy is good economic policy.
Today’s announcement also builds on the ongoing partnership between California, Quebec and Ontario to form a joint cap-and-trade market to curb greenhouse gas emissions.
Image: From left to right: Washington Governor Jay Inslee, Quebec Premier Philippe Couillard, Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne, Governor Brown, Quebec Minister of Sustainable Development, Environment and the Fight against Climate Change David Heurtel and Ontario Minister of the Environment and Climate Change Glen Murray