City Releases Action Guide in Response to
Trump Administration’s Executive Order on Climate Change
PHILADELPHIA- Calling it irresponsible and disastrous, Mayor Kenney today released a response to the Trump Administration’s executive order aimed at rolling back climate change programs and regulations.
The President’s executive order directs the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to rescind the Clean Power Plan, aimed at reducing carbon emission from power plants. The order also removes barriers to coal, oil and gas development on federal lands, and rolls back orders for federal agencies to consider climate change in decision-making.
The executive order comes two weeks after the Trump Administration released a proposed budget which includes cutting the appropriation for the EPA by a devastating 31% and eliminating funding for a variety of environmental and climate change programs.
“Eliminating the Clean Power Plan and other programs that fight climate change is irresponsible. A hotter and wetter climate will have a disastrous impact on the health of our residents and our communities.” said Mayor Kenney. “Additionally, the proposed Trump budget would have immediate and drastic effects on many programs that Philadelphians rely on, such as those that support local air pollution prevention efforts, or that help residents save money on energy.”
In order to help residents take action against these cuts and the dismantling of environmental programs, the City put together a guide that includes facts, ways to help and other resources. The guide documents can be found here: https://beta.phila.gov/documents/environment-sustainability-city-of-philadelphia-action-guide/. A blog post urging action by residents can be found here: https://beta.phila.gov/posts/office-of-sustainability/2017-03-28-environment-sustainability-city-of-philadelphia-action-guide/
“Any attempt to undermine programs designed to fight climate change is a step backward,” said Christine Knapp, Philadelphia’s Director of the Office of Sustainability. “Scientific consensus compels us to act now to reduce harmful carbon pollution to protect public health now and in the future.”
Mayor Kenney is also among 35 U.S. mayors who have sent a letter to the President objecting to the executive order on climate change. In the letter, issued today by the Mayors National Climate Action Agenda (MNCAA), the mayors tell the President that they “fear your Administration’s actions and executive order will undermine America’s leadership on climate action, if not take us backwards.” It also points out that climate action is an investment in the U.S. economy and job creation. “Electric vehicles, solar power, energy efficiency and battery storage are all avenues to restoring our nation’s manufacturing base and create good, middle class jobs,” write the mayors. The full letter can be viewed here.
Philadelphia’s sustainability plan, Greenworks, commits Philadelphia to reducing carbon emissions by 80% by 2050, a goal set by the Paris Climate agreement. Since the Office of Sustainability began issuing a greenhouse gas inventory in 2010, carbon emissions in the City have dropped by 17%. However, even as the City works towards reducing our carbon footprint, local climate projections show that Philadelphia may experience:
- Four to ten times as many days per year above 95 degrees, compared to present
- As many as 16 days a year above 100 degrees by the end of the century compared to present, with more of these days coming in heat waves
- A greater frequency of heavy precipitation events, with the largest increase occurring in winter months
- Higher sea levels that will increase the depth and extent of flooding in and around the city from storm surges
More information at https://beta.phila.gov/departments/office-of-sustainability/