Paris, France — World leaders are voting today on a final agreement to limit global warming to no more than 1.5 degrees Celsius, a benchmark scientists say is critical to avoid devastating impacts of global warming that could render the planet uninhabitable. The document includes provisions to track, verify, and update individual nations’ pollution reduction strategies every five years. Environment America’s executive director Margie Alt issued the following statement applauding the historic agreement:
“96 percent of Americans live in counties recently hit by record floods, historic drought, or other weather-related disasters. Too many of us already know that global warming is hitting close to home, and none of us wants to leave the next generation an even more dangerous and extreme climate. That’s why the Paris agreement is incredible news for our environment, our health, and the future of our planet.
“Thanks to leadership from state and local leaders and President Obama, the U.S. has already made tremendous progress in curbing pollution and propelling wind and solar power forward. Mayors, businesses, public health professionals and citizens from across the nation stand behind the Clean Power Plan, the biggest step the U.S. has ever taken to act on climate, and now they stand ready to act locally as part of this landmark global accord.
“This historic agreement lays the foundation for the 100 percent pollution-free energy future we need. And it gives me hope that we can limit global warming enough to ensure the safer climate future generations deserve.”