SACRAMENTO – Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr. today joined a bipartisan group of 17 governors in signing the Governors’ Accord for a New Energy Future – a joint commitment to pursuing modern electric grids, cleaner energy and transportation solutions.
“With this agreement, governors from both parties have joined together and committed themselves to a clean energy future,” said Governor Brown. “Our goal is to clean up the air and protect our natural resources.”
Democratic and Republican signatories to the accord commit that their states will work together to continue diversifying energy generation, expanding clean energy sources, modernizing energy infrastructure, encouraging clean transportation options and securing a stronger national energy future.
California’s Leadership on Climate Change
While California emits around 1 percent of the world’s greenhouse gases, the state is playing a leading role in broadening collaboration amongst subnational leaders, spearheading the Under 2 MOU, a global pact amongst cities, states and countries to limit the increase in global average temperature to below 2 degrees Celsius. A total of 127 jurisdictions representing 27 countries and six continents have now signed or endorsed the Under 2 MOU. Together, they represent more than 729 million people and $20.4 trillion in GDP, equivalent to more than a quarter of the global economy.
The Governor last year traveled to the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Paris, the Vatican in Italy, the United Nations in New York and the Climate Summit of the Americas in Toronto, Canada to call on others leaders to join California in the fight against climate change. Governor Brown also joined an unprecedented alliance of heads of state, city and state leaders – convened by the World Bank Group and International Monetary Fund – to urge countries and companies around the globe to put a price on carbon.
These efforts build on a number of other international climate change agreements with leaders from Mexico, China, North America, Japan, Israel, Peru and Chile and Governor Brown’s efforts to convene hundreds of world-renowned researchers and scientists around a groundbreaking call to action – called the consensus statement – which translates key scientific climate findings from disparate fields into one unified document.
Last October, Governor Brown signed landmark legislation – SB 350 – that codified the goals he laid out in his January 2015 inaugural address to double the rate of energy efficiency savings in California buildings and generate half of the state’s electricity from renewable sources by 2030. In the same remarks, Governor Brown committed to reduce today’s petroleum use in cars and trucks by up to 50 percent within the next 15 years; make heating fuels cleaner; reduce the release of methane, black carbon and other potent pollutants across industries; and manage farm and rangelands, forests and wetlands so they can store carbon.
The Governor also issued an executive order last year to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in California 40 percent below 1990 levels by 2030 – the most ambitious target in North America and consistent with California’s existing commitment to reduce emissions 80 percent under 1990 levels by 2050.
The impacts of climate change are already being felt in California and will disproportionately impact the state’s most vulnerable populations.