Letters and Statements

#ClimateMayors Letter to President Trump on Roll Back of U.S. Climate Actions

March 28, 2017

Dear President Trump,

As members of the Mayors National Climate Action Agenda (MNCAA), we represent more than 42 million Americans in 75 cities across our nation — in red and blue states alike. We write to strongly object to your actions to roll back critically important U.S. climate policies including the Clean Power Plan and vehicle fuel efficiency standards, as well as proposed budget cuts to the EPA and critical federal programs like Energy Star.

Climate change is both the greatest single threat we face, and our greatest economic opportunity for our nation. That is why we affirm our cities’ commitments to taking every action possible to achieve the principles and goals of the Paris Climate Agreement, and to engage states, businesses and other sectors to join us.

As Mayors, we work with our constituents face-to-face, every day, and they demand that we act on climate to improve quality of life and create economic growth. As public servants and stewards of public funds and infrastructure, we also cannot ignore the costs of inaction. That is why we are also standing up for our constituents and all Americans harmed by climate change, including those most vulnerable among us: coastal residents confronting erosion and sea level rise; young and old alike suffering from worsening air pollution and at risk during heatwaves; mountain residents engulfed by wildfires; farmers struggling at harvest time due to drought; and communities across our nation challenged by extreme weather.

Climate action is also an investment in our economy and job creation — electric vehicles, solar power, energy efficiency and battery storage are all avenues to restoring our nation’s manufacturing base and create good, middle class jobs. Recently, thirty MNCAA cities demonstrated how we can accelerate markets and drive economic growth by issuing a formal Request for Information for the potential acquisition of nearly 115,000 electric vehicles for our municipal fleets.

The private sector recognizes the opportunities of climate action as well. Goldman Sachs is committing $150 billion to clean energy capital. Companies like Microsoft, Wal-Mart, and Google are some of the largest purchasers of solar and renewable energy. Today, one in fifty American jobs is now in the solar sector, surpassing employment in oil, gas, and coal extraction combined. Texas is once again experiencing an energy boom — this time, with wind power. In fact, the majority of wind jobs in the U.S. are in congressional districts that voted for you.

As the “Climate Mayors,” we wrote to you during your transition asking that you work with cities on climate action – the nation’s first responders and economic hubs – and to embrace the Paris Climate Agreement commitment. Instead, we fear your Administration’s recent actions and today’s executive order will undermine America’s leadership on climate action, if not take us backwards.

We urge you to change course, and to join us. In the meantime, America’s cities will continue to lead the way in moving forward in protecting our residents from the disastrous effects of climate change, and creating a thriving 21st century economy.

Sincerely,

Mayor Eric Garcetti
City of Los Angeles, CA

Mayor Ed Murray
City of Seattle, WA

Mayor Lioneld Jordan
City of Fayetteville, AR

Mayor Kasim Reed
City of Atlanta, GA

Mayor Martin J Walsh
City of Boston, MA

Mayor Rahm Emanuel
City of Chicago, IL

Mayor Sylvester Turner
City of Houston, TX

Mayor Bill de Blasio
New York City, NY

Mayor Jim Kenney
City of Philadelphia, PA

Mayor Ed Lee
City of San Francisco, CA

Mayor Sam Liccardo
City of San Jose, CA

Mayor Muriel Bowser
Washington, D.C.

Mayor Esther Manheimer
City of Asheville, NC

Mayor Steve Skadron
City of Aspen, CO

Mayor Steve Adler
City of Austin, TX

Mayor John Hamilton
City of Bloomington, IN

Mayor Suzanne Jones
City of Boulder, CO

Mayor Lori S Liu
City of Brisbane, CA

Mayor Miro Weinberger
City of Burlington, VT

Mayor Mary Casillas Salas
City of Chula Vista, CA

Mayor Stephen K Benjamin
City of Columbia, SC

Mayor Michael Hancock
City of Denver, CO

Mayor Roy D Buol
City of Dubuque, IA

Mayor William V Bell
City of Durham, NC

Mayor David Kaptain
City of Elgin, IL

Mayor Lucy Vinis
City of Eugene, OR

Mayor Elizabeth Tisdahl
City of Evanston, IL

Mayor Madeline Rogero
City of Knoxville, TN

Mayor Philip Levine
City of Miami Beach, FL

Mayor Tom Barrett
City of Milwaukee, WI

Mayor Mark Gamba
City of Milwaukie, OR

Mayor Betsy Hodges
City of Minneapolis, MN

Mayor John Hollar
City of Montpelier, VT

Mayor Dennis Coombs
City of Longmont, CO

Mayor Robert Garcia
City of Long Beach, CA

Mayor Jon Mitchell
City of New Bedford, MA

Mayor Mitch Landrieu
City of New Orleans, LA

Mayor Libby Schaaf
City of Oakland, CA

Mayor Buddy Dyer
City of Orlando, FL

Mayor Greg Scharff
City of Palo Alto, CA

Mayor Jack Thomas
Park City, UT

Mayor Bill Peduto
City of Pittsburgh, PA

Mayor Ted Wheeler
City of Portland, OR

Mayor Liz Lempert
Municipality of Princeton, NJ

Mayor Jorge Elorza
City of Providence, RI

Mayor Alan Galbraith
City of Saint Helena, CA

Mayor Jackie Biskupski
Salt Lake City, UT

Mayor Pauline Russo Cutter
City of San Leandro, CA

Mayor Ted Winterer
City of Santa Monica, CA

Mayor Joe Curtatone
City of Somerville, MA

Mayor Glenn Hendricks
City of Sunnyvale, CA

Mayor Marilyn Strickland
City of Tacoma, WA

Mayor Jonathan Rothschild
City of Tucson, AZ

Mayor Jeri Muoio
City of West Palm Beach, FL

Mayor Christopher Cabaldon
City of West Sacramento, CA

Mayor Allen Joines
City of Winston Salem, NC

Mayor Kathy Sheehan
City of Albany, NY

Updated signatories as of 2pm PT on May 31, 2017

If you would like to sign this open letter, or require further information about #ClimateMayors (the MNCAA) and its activities please email info@climate-mayors.org

Open Letter to President-elect Donald J Trump on Climate Action

November 22, 2016

Dear President-elect Trump,

As Mayors, we have taken it upon ourselves to take bold action within our cities to tackle the climate crisis head-on. We write today to ask for your partnership in our work to clean our air, strengthen our economy, and ensure that our children inherit a nation healthier and better prepared for the future than it is today.

We lead 71 small and large American cities, comprising over 38 million Americans in both blue and red states. We have joined together in the Mayors’ National Climate Action Agenda (MNCAA), or the #ClimateMayors, in addressing the greatest challenge of our time, climate change. Each of our cities is committing to ambitious targets to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, set climate action, regularly report on our progress, share lessons and hold each other accountable. Around the globe, cities are working together through organizations like C40 as well.

The effects of climate change – extreme storms, wildfires and drought; sea level rise and storm surge; choking air pollution in cities; disruption of agricultural supply chains and jobs in rural heartlands; and coastal erosion, to name a few – are a clear and present danger to American interests at home and abroad. This is why the U.S. Department of Defense stated in 2015 “that climate change is an urgent and growing threat to our national security”. Furthermore, estimates have shown these impacts from climate change could cost the American economy $500 billion annually by 2050, and that figure will only rise unless we work together to stem, and ultimately reverse, the amount of greenhouse gases entering our atmosphere.

The cost of prevention pales in comparison to cost of inaction, in terms of dollars, property and human life. As our incoming President, as a businessman, and as a parent, we believe we can find common ground when it comes to addressing an issue not rooted in politics or philosophy, but in science and hard economic data. Simply put, we can all agree that fires, flooding and financial losses are bad for our country, that we need to protect our communities’ most vulnerable residents who suffer the most from the impacts of climate change, and that we all need healthier air to breathe and a stronger economy–rural and urban, Republican and Democrat–and in terms of our domestic quality of life and our standing abroad.

On November 8, American voters approved more than $200 billion in local measures, funded by their own local tax dollars, to improve quality of life and reduce carbon pollution. Seventy percent of voters in Los Angeles County, the car capital of the world, approved a $120 billion, multi-decade commitment to public transit. Seattle voters approved transit investments totaling $54 billion; Austin voters approved a record-setting $720 million mobility bond; Boston voters approved investment in affordable housing, parks, historic preservation and more.

As President, you will have the power to expand and accelerate these local initiatives which the people resoundingly supported. We call upon you and the federal government you will lead to help cities leverage funds for the hundreds of billions of dollars in transit, energy, infrastructure and real estate development necessary to upgrade our infrastructure for the 21st century. We ask that you lead us in expanding the renewable energy sources we need to achieve energy security, address climate change and spark a new manufacturing, energy and construction boom in America. We ask that you help provide American businesses the certainty to invest through continued tax credits for electric vehicles, solar power, renewables and other clean technologies. And we ask that you shift to embrace the Paris Climate Agreement and make U.S. cities your partner in doing so.

While we are prepared to forge ahead even in the absence of federal support, we know that if we stand united on this issue, we can make change that will resonate for generations. We have no choice and no room to doubt our resolve. The time for bold leadership and action is now.

Signed,

Mayor Eric Garcetti
City of Los Angeles, CA

Mayor Martin J Walsh
City of Boston, MA

Mayor Bill de Blasio
New York City, NY

Mayor Edward B Murray
City of Seattle, WA

Mayor Stephen K Benjamin
City of Columbia, SC

Mayor Jennifer W Roberts
City of Charlotte, NC

Mayor Rahm Emanuel
City of Chicago, IL

Mayor Greg Stanton
City of Phoenix, AZ

Mayor Jim Kenney
City of Philadelphia, PA

Mayor Buddy Dyer
City of Orlando, FL

Mayor Roy D Buol
City of Dubuque, IA

Mayor Charlie Hales
City of Portland, OR

Mayor Jackie Biskupski
Salt Lake City, UT

Mayor Libby Schaaf
City of Oakland, CA

Mayor Sam Liccardo
City of San Jose, CA

Mayor Muriel Bowser
Washington, DC

Mayor Christopher B Coleman
City of Saint Paul, MN

Mayor Kasim Reed
City of Atlanta, GA

Mayor Sly James
City of Kansas City, MO

Mayor Michael B Hancock
City and County of Denver, CO

Mayor Steve Adler
City of Austin, TX

Mayor Ed Lee
City of San Francisco, CA

Mayor Bill Peduto
City of Pittsburgh, PA

Mayor Kitty Piercy
City of Eugene, OR

Mayor Tom Bates
City of Berkeley, CA

Mayor Tony Vasquez
City of Santa Monica, CA

Mayor Joseph A Curtatone
City of Somerville, MA

Mayor Steve Skadron
City of Aspen, CO

Mayor Suzanne Jones
City of Boulder, CO

Mayor Jack Thomas
Park City, UT

Mayor Mary Casillas Salas
City of Chula Vista, CA

Mayor Elizabeth B Tisdahl
City of Evanston, IL

Mayor-elect Darrell Steinberg
City of Sacramento, CA

Mayor Sylvester Turner
City of Houston, TX

Mayor Patrick Burt
City of Palo Alto, CA

Mayor Mitchell J Landrieu
City of New Orleans, LA

Mayor Philip Levine
City of Miami Beach, FL

Mayor Lioneld Jordan
City of Fayetteville, AR

Mayor Betsy Hodges
City of Minneapolis, MN

Mayor Karen Freeman-Wilson
City of Gary, IN

Mayor Ashley Swearengin
City of Fresno, CA

Mayor John Hamilton
City of Bloomington, IN

Mayor-elect Michael Tubbs
City of Stockton, CA

Mayor John J Tecklenburg
City of Charleston, SC

Mayor Miro Weinberger
City of Burlington, VT

Mayor Dennis Coombs
City of Longmont, CO

Mayor John P “Jack” Seiler
City of Fort Lauderdale, FL

Mayor Christopher Cabaldon
City of West Sacramento, CA

Mayor Jake Mackenzie
City of Rohnert Park, CA

Mayor Allan Ekberg
City of Tukwila, WA

Mayor Hillary Schieve
City of Reno, NV

Mayor Allen Joines
City of Winston Salem, NC

Mayor Mark Stodola
City of Little Rock, AR

Mayor Jonathan Rothschild
City of Tucson, AZ

Mayor Edward O’Brien
City of West Haven, CT

Mayor William “Bill” V Bell
City of Durham, NC

Mayor Jon Mitchell
City of New Bedford, MA

Mayor Patrick Wojahn
City of College Park, MD

Mayor Jim B Clarke
Culver City, CA

Mayor Jeffrey Z Slavin
Town of Somerset, MD

Mayor Christopher Taylor
City of Ann Arbor, MI

Mayor Kathy Sheehan
City of Albany, NY

Mayor Matt Larson
City of Snoqualmie, WA

Mayor Madeline Rogero
City of Knoxville, TN

Mayor David Kaptain
City of Elgin, IL

Mayor Wade Troxell
City of Fort Collins, CO

Mayor Helene Schneider
City of Santa Barbara, CA

Mayor Robert Garcia
City of Long Beach, CA

Mayor Smith Joseph
City of North Miami, FL

Mayor Lou La Monte
City of Malibu, CA

Mayor Jim Cason
City of Coral Gables, FL

 

 

Last updated 7am PT on February 14,  2017.

If you would like to sign this open letter, or require further information about the MNCAA and its activities please email info@climate-mayors.org

April 15, 2016

President Barack Obama
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W.
Washington, DC 20500

Dear President Obama,

As mayors committed to leading the fight against climate change, we believe the recent Aliso Canyon gas leak has pointed out the challenges facing communities where similar oil and gas infrastructure is found. Each of our cities shares concerns about these facilities, including health and safety, as well as the methane released from natural gas and oil production, consumption, storage, and transport.

We have come together through the Mayors’ National Climate Action Agenda (MNCAA) to support action on climate change. Given that methane is a potent, short lived climate pollutant–84 times more potent than carbon dioxide in the short-term—we write to you today.

First, thank you for your March 10 commitment to ensuring that the U.S. EPA moves forward expeditiously on rules to limit methane emissions from new sources, per your commitment last summer, and critically, from existing sources of oil and gas production infrastructure. This action is vitally important as we need rules that address methane leaks throughout the entire life-cycle of oil and gas, including both production and consumption.

Such rules would not only have a climate benefit, but they would reduce the costly waste of energy resources. These rules would also serve to cut the toxic soup of air contaminants that are released alongside methane not just from oil and gas production, but from their transportation and storage as well. This is a risk that threatens every city.

However, the climate benefits from these rules can be undermined by lack of oversight elsewhere in the value chain, and lagging advancement of renewable energy and alternative forms of storage of energy. Therefore, we are asking for your leadership in rapidly addressing these issues in two additional ways:

1. Direct the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) to add regulation of oil and gas storage facilities along with interstate pipelines. 

To date, storage facilities and interstate transportation infrastructure have been overlooked. The risk of such a gap in oversight has been highlighted most recently by the disaster at Aliso Canyon in Los Angeles where a gaswell leaked more methane than ever experienced in the United States and led to the emergency relocation of over 5,000 residents in the neighboring communities. Most leaks aren’t as big as Aliso Canyon, but they add up to a much larger problem in aggregate.

2. Research energy storage technologies to pair with renewables.

We ask that you enlist the expertise of the Department of Energy to study alternatives for existing natural gas storage facilities. Namely, we propose a redoubled emphasis on energy storage technologies, including battery storage, pumped hydro storage, and compressed air storage among other methods, which can make intermittent renewable energy production technologies more viable throughout the day. This technology would allow for the continued use of existing infrastructure, but serve as a much safer and cleaner strategy for addressing peak energy demand in comparison to natural gas-fired generation. Financing should also be made available to cities to help them move buildings and homes toward clean technologies such as battery storage paired with grid-tied solar installations.

Thankfully, in the wake of the leak at Aliso Canyon, U.S. Secretary of Energy Moniz announced on April 1 the Interagency Task Force on Natural Gas Storage Safety. We ask for your support in ensuring the task force addresses both these matters, and other related issues they identify. Please know we stand ready to help support and contribute to the work of the task force if and as possible.

We understand that our economy will continue to rely on fossil fuels for the near future. However, the oil and gas industry must not imperil our air quality, our public health, and our climate through leaks and venting. The public relies on all of us to make decisions that protect their health and welfare.

Sincerely,

Mayor Eric Garcetti
City of Los Angeles

Mayor Steve Skadron
City of Aspen

Mayor Steve Adler
City of Austin

Mayor Tom Bates
City of Berkeley

Mayor Suzanne Jones
City of Boulder

Mayor Rahm Emanuel
Mayor of Chicago

Mayor Michael Hancock
City of Denver

Mayor Muriel Bowser
District of Columbia

Mayor Sly James
City of Kansas City

Mayor Bill de Blasio
City of New York

Mayor Libby Shaaf
City of Oakland

Mayor Charlie Hales
City of Portland

cc: Gina McCarthy, Administrator of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
Anthony Foxx, Secretary of U.S. Department of Transportation
Ernest Moniz, Secretary of U.S. Department of Energy
Marie Therese Dominguez, Administrator of the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration, U.S. Department of Transportation

In June 2015, almost 30 mayors wrote to President Barack Obama as a call to action on international climate issues in Paris during COP21 and a request for further GHG reductions at home. The force behind the letter was a co-creation of Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, Houston Mayor Annise Parker, and former Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter.

Here is our letter and our list of signatories:

June 18, 2015

President Barack Obama

The White House

1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W.

Washington, DC 20500

Dear Mr. President:

As Mayors of 27 cities representing almost 20 million people, we write to thank you for your leadership on climate mitigation and resilience. As you said in your State of the Union speech, “No challenge poses a greater threat to future generations than climate change.”

We are writing to call on you to act in the best interests of the American people and fight for the strongest possible climate agreement at the upcoming 21st Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP21) in Paris, and for federal action to establish binding national greenhouse gas emissions reductions here at home. The United States can and should be the leader in the transition to a clean energy economy.

To support your leadership and assist you and the U.S. delegation in reaching the strongest possible agreement, we are launching a campaign today to engage with our constituents, elected officials and other stakeholders to help achieve these strong outcomes at the national and international levels, while building on municipal leadership on climate change.

As Mayors, we understand that we are stronger working together. That is why we have come together and created the Mayors National Climate Action Agenda (MNCAA) to help lead the way to a solution to global climate change. A changing and variable climate has tremendous implications for the livability, competitiveness and resilience of communities across the country. The extreme weather events we have all increasingly experienced in recent years and the future projections we face make it clear that we all share a common risk and commitment to safeguarding our communities.

The MNCAA is a mayor-to-mayor initiative to raise the collective voice of leading mayors, demonstrate the essential role of cities in working towards climate solutions, and build political will for U.S. leadership. This initiative, established by the Mayors of Houston, Los Angeles and Philadelphia, includes the undersigned, and will continue to grow. The negotiations in Paris will be as challenging as they are critical to our cities’ environmental health and economic prosperity.

Cities across the country are already taking the lead. The cities we represent are working to take responsible steps to curb emissions and plan for the changing climate. Many of our cities have reached Kyoto commitments far ahead of states and the national government, and cities across the country are committing to binding targets, creating standardized inventories and climate action plans and laying the ground work for a municipal offset protocol. But we cannot act alone. We need the federal government to provide a path forward to making meaningful reductions in carbon pollution while preparing for the impacts of climate change.

Despite the dangerous/irresponsible stalemate in Congress, climate change is not a policy debate in communities all across the United States. The effects of a changing climate are presenting a clear and present threat. Extreme weather is presenting itself more regularly, though it takes many forms—from droughts in the west, wildfires in the intermountain states, to flooding and snow storms in the east and coastal erosion in the Gulf states.

Momentum is building for international coordination. COP21 represents a prime opportunity for American leadership. We recognize that local governments have a major role to play in reducing greenhouse gas levels. We are encouraged that there is interest on the part of COP 21 for having language in the final agreement that specifically pertains to cities.

The time for strong U.S. action is now. We look forward to standing with you here at home and in Paris to bring leadership and focus to the reality of climate change and to urge national dialogue and action.

Sincerely,

ANN ARBOR MAYOR CHRISTOPHER TAYLOR

ASPEN MAYOR STEVE SKADRON

AUSTIN MAYOR STEVE ADLER

ATLANTA MAYOR KASIM REED

BERKELEY MAYOR TOM BATES

BOULDER MAYOR MATT APPELBAUM

CHARLOTTE MAYOR DAN CLODFELTER

COLUMBUS MAYOR MICHAEL COLEMAN

DENVER MAYOR MICHAEL HANCOCK

FORT COLLINS MAYOR WADE TROXELL

HOUSTON MAYOR ANNISE PARKER

KANSAS CITY MAYOR SLY JAMES

LOS ANGELES MAYOR ERIC GARCETTI

MINNEAPOLIS MAYOR BETSY HODGES

OAKLAND MAYOR LIBBY SCHAAF

ORLANDO MAYOR BUDDY DYER

PARK CITY MAYOR JACK THOMAS

PHILADELPHIA MAYOR MICHAEL NUTTER

PHOENIX MAYOR GREG STANTON

PORTLAND MAYOR CHARLIE HALES

SALT LAKE CITY MAYOR RALPH BECKER

SAN FRANCISCO MAYOR ED LEE

SAN JOSE MAYOR SAM LICCARDO

SANTA MONICA MAYOR KEVIN MCKEOWN

SEATTLE MAYOR ED MURRAY

SOMERVILLE MAYOR JOE CURTATONE

TACOMA MAYOR MARILYN STRICKLAND