Seattle Mayor Jenny A. Durkan joined more than 50 Mayors in signing the Chicago Climate Charter, a first-of-its-kind international charter on climate change. By signing the Charter, Seattle and other cities are sending a clear signal that their commitment to climate action is unwavering even in the face of inaction by President Trump and his administration.
“We cannot let the President and his climate change-denying administration block progress on this critical issue,” said Mayor Durkan. “Seattle is a city that leads, and my administration will work to make protecting our planet a central goal. Taking action on climate is important for the future of Seattle and generations to come.”
At the North American Climate Summit, cities are taking action to articulate commitments to the Paris Agreement and highlight the scope and scale of city climate action in the United States following the Trump administration’s decision to withdraw from the Paris Agreement. By signing the Chicago Climate Charter, cities are pledging to:
- Achieve a percent reduction in carbon emissions in line with the Paris Agreement;
- Quantify, track and publicly report city emissions, consistent with standards and best practices of measurement and transparency;
- Advocate alongside other mayors for greater local authority and flexibility to develop policies and local laws that empower cities to take aggressive action on climate;
- Recognize and include groups traditionally underrepresented in climate policy;
- Incorporate the realities of climate change and its impacts into local infrastructure and emergency planning through strategies of adaptation and resilience;
- Support strong regional, state and federal policies and partnerships, as well as private sector initiatives, that incentivize the transition to a new climate economy; and
- Partner with experts, communities, businesses, environmental justice groups, advocates and other allies to develop holistic climate mitigation and resilience solutions.
Seattle has long been recognized as a world leader in climate action. Seattle City Light was the first large utility in the nation to become carbon neutral in 2005. When the Bush Administration pulled out of the Kyoto Protocol, Seattle launched the Mayor’s Climate Protection Initiative and challenged U.S. mayors to step up their climate leadership. In 2011, Seattle once again set the bar for climate action by being one of the first cities in the nation to formally adopt the bold goal of becoming a carbon neutral city by 2050.