(Washington, DC) On behalf of the 500 African American mayors across the country, Toni Harp, Mayor of New Haven, CT and President of the African American Mayors Association (AAMA), released the following statement in response to the Trump Administration’s withdrawal of the United States from the Paris Climate Accord:
“President Trump’s withdrawal from the Paris Climate Accord is a dark day for America’s global leadership and the fight against climate change. The Agreement was an important demonstration of international unity and essential action to stem the impacts of global warming, which affect us all. That’s why the AAMA is standing with our colleagues against the President’s decision.
“The Paris Accords were not just a win for environmental protection—they were also a victory in the fight for racial justice. This decision is especially detrimental to communities of color, who are disproportionately affected by climate change. Research shows that people of color have greater exposure to air pollution and are more likely to live near landfills and toxic waste sites. As evidenced by the crisis in Flint, children of color are at the highest risk for lead poisoning and water contamination. And, communities of color are more likely to have their livelihoods destroyed by extreme weather.
“This week’s news emphasizes that local leadership is more important than ever. The actions we take in our cities to reduce emissions and slow pollution will be the deciding factor in whether our nation contributes to climate change or slows its dangerous pace. We are united with our colleagues at Climate Mayors and the United States Conference of Mayors to stand up for the planet, for our citizens, and for future generations. Local government is the only solution to to ensuring our nation addresses the urgent climate problems The White House is choosing to ignore.”