Mayors Of Cities Under Climate Change Threats Are Stepping Up To Take Action

cities across the U.S. are on the frontlines of climate change impacts.

Mayor Martin Walsh hosts a Fireside Chat with Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, former Secretary of State John Kerry and Anne Finucane from Bank of America. Photo by Isabel Leon, courtesy of the Boston mayor’s office.

FROM RAGING WILDFIRES IN CALIFORNIA, TO HURRICANE HARVEY IN HOUSTON, AND HISTORIC FLOODING AND WINTER STORMS IN BOSTON, cities across the U.S. are on the frontlines of climate change impacts.

But they are also at the forefront of climate solutions.

A network of over 400 cities representing nearly 70 million Americans – the Climate Mayors network – is working collectively to advance climate initiatives even as the federal government takes a back seat.

“A year ago, when the president pulled out of the Paris Agreement, what he didn’t realize was he was lighting a fire under America’s mayors,” Boston Mayor Martin J. Walsh said during a recent Mayors Climate Summit held at Boston University.

The summit brought together 25 mayors from cities around the country and abroad to share best practices and discuss how municipalities are moving forward on addressing the existential threat of climate change.

Despite the current state of climate denial gripping the federal government, the mayors at the summit spoke of the urgency of the climate crisis, referencing impacts already occurring in their cities.

“In Houston, we have to face the reality of climate change, when you’re dealing with three 500-year floods in three years … We don’t have a choice,” said Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner. “If we don’t move with a sense of urgency, then our cities will suffer.”

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