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USA’s Trump administration will be bypassed, as California leads in global talks on climate change

Last month, Brown discussed climate change with Chinese President Xi Jinping in Beijing, an unusual level of engagement between the Chinese head of state and a governor. (Energy Secretary Rick Perry, by contrast, did not meet with Xi in a recent trip to China).

“He wants to make clear that if you can’t look to Washington, you can look to California on progressive environmental policy,” said Ann Carlson, professor of environmental law at UCLA

Gov. Brown unveils plan for global climate summit, further undercutting Trump’s agenda, Melanie MasonEvan Halper and Patrick McGreevyContact Reporters, 6 Jul 17, In a rebuke to President Trump’s disengagement from worldwide climate change efforts, Gov. Jerry Brown told an international audience Thursday the president “doesn’t speak for the rest of us” and unveiled plans for a global environmental summit in San Francisco next year.

The announcement, at a convening of climate activists in Hamburg, Germany, coinciding with Trump’s arrival there for the G-20 summit of world leaders, signals once more how Brown and other American leaders aim to galvanize continued efforts against climate change, even as the federal government moves in the opposite direction.

“It’s hard to grasp the mortal danger that climate change represents,” Brown said in an interview with The Times. “I believe that California, New York, France and Germany and the other countries — we have to get our act together, strengthen our commitment and bring as many nations along as we can.”

Whether Brown and his American cohorts, including Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcettiand former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, will ultimately be able to take sufficient action to curb global warming is uncertain, but they are already succeeding in undercutting the authority of the White House to set the U.S. agenda on climate. Since Trump quit the Paris accord on climate change, California and a dozen other states have vowed to not only stick with the agreement, but also step up their emission reduction efforts to push the rest of the country along. A coalition of cities committed to the climate action outlined in Paris — led by Garcetti — has swollen from a few dozen members to 331 in the last few weeks.

Brown and other American climate crusaders see the G-20 meeting as a crucial moment. Several world leaders who will attend the summit have already signaled that they will confront Trump on climate issues during its proceedings, and a move is afoot to conclude the meeting with a written reaffirmation of commitment to the Paris guidelines that would ostensibly be signed by every G-20 every nation except the U.S. — underscoring how far out of alignment with the rest of the world Trump is on the issue.

But even before the summit began, unity among the other countries was already starting to fray. While Western European leaders vowed to push the issue, countries such as Russia, Indonesia and Turkey were expressing less bombast. Saudi Arabia — which is still bullish on climate action but is also eager to remain in good diplomatic standing with the U.S. amid its dispute with fellow American ally Qatar — is also hedging.

With his video announcement Thursday to attendees of the Global Citizen Festival in Hamburg, Brown aimed to shore up opposition to Trump’s climate moves and send a signal that the U.S. can maintain a leadership role despite the president.

“It’s up to you and it’s up to me and tens of millions of other people to get it together to roll back the forces of carbonization and join together to combat the existential threat of climate change,” Brown said in his video, appearing in a leafy setting with a blazer and no tie. “Yes, I know President Trump is trying to get out of the Paris agreement, but he doesn’t speak for the rest of America…. We in California and in states all across America believe it’s time to act, it’s time to join together and that’s why at this climate action summit we’re going to get it done.”

Host of next United Nations climate conference turns to California in the global warming battle »

Brown’s message was projected into the arena, and the audience burst out in applause when the governor said Trump doesn’t speak for the rest of the U.S.

Trump was not invited to speak at the festival because his policies don’t align with its goal of supporting global health, climate and gender equality, said a source involved in organizing the festival. Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, Argentinian President Mauricio Macri and other leaders took the stage to speak about climate change and education to the crowd of 12,000.

The planned 2018 California summit, Brown told The Times, would signify “the biggest state in the union is the venue for a worldwide convocation of states, regions and entrepreneurs and others who want to do something serious about climate change.”……

Last month, Brown discussed climate change with Chinese President Xi Jinping in Beijing, an unusual level of engagement between the Chinese head of state and a governor. (Energy Secretary Rick Perry, by contrast, did not meet with Xi in a recent trip to China).

“He wants to make clear that if you can’t look to Washington, you can look to California on progressive environmental policy,” said Ann Carlson, professor of environmental law at UCLA………http://www.latimes.com/politics/la-pol-sac-jerry-brown-climate-summit-20170706-story.html

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July 8, 2017 - Posted by | climate change, USA

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