Photographer: Joe Raedle/Getty Images

Cities, States and Businesses Put U.S. Halfway to Paris Goal

  • Emissions on pace to fall 12-14 percent by 2025, study finds
  • U.S. pledged cuts of as much as 28 percent under Paris pact

Efforts by cities, states and corporations to fight global warming have put the U.S. halfway toward its Paris climate accord goal, even as President Donald Trump rolls back federal environmental efforts.

The push by public and private leaders from New York to California has put greenhouse gases on track to fall 12 percent to 14 percent below 2005 levels over the next eight years, according to a study released Monday by NewClimate Institute and The Climate Group. The U.S. pledged cuts of 26 percent to 28 percent during that period under a global pact brokered in the French capital in 2015. Trump announced in June that the U.S. would exit the agreement.

The study uses data from CDP (formerly the Carbon Disclosure Project), that includes commitments from 22 states, 54 cities and 250 U.S.-based businesses. Some of the largest reductions come from California, New York and Colorado, according to the study, released as world leaders and industry executives gather for Climate Week NYC and the United Nations general assembly.

“President Trump and all his tweets cannot stop our states from moving forward,” Washington State Governor Jay Inslee said during Climate Week NYC’s opening ceremony. “He cannot stop any of the things we are doing.”

In the private sector, commitments by companies to wean themselves off fossil fuels and source power from wind and solar farms have also been a key driver, the study found. Mars Inc. board member Stephen Badger said the economics of clean energy are driving that shift.

“We are already finding our bills to be less than what we would pay with fossil fuels,” said Badger, whose McLean, Virginia-based company has committed to spending more than $1 billion to cut its carbon emissions.

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