Lawmakers push for new Pa. legislation in response to Paris Climate Accord withdrawal

HARRISBURG, Pa. (WHTM) – Pennsylvania Democrats are pushing for state legislation in response to President Trump’s plans to withdraw from the Paris Climate Accord.

State Senators Jay Costa (D-Allegheny) and Wayne Fontana (D-Allegheny) released a statement saying:

“Like you, Mr. President, I too was elected to represent the people of Pittsburgh- but I’m going to stick to my word. In the absence of federal leadership, I’m going to take steps to ensure a future for our children, providing an environment where people can grown, thrive and live healthy lives with an expectation that the water they’re drinking and the air they’re breathing is clean and safe.”

“Pittsburgh has reinvented itself from the smoky city it once was to a modern, high-tech economy that treasures its clean environment. I refuse to idly sit back and be a spectator to this ill-conceived, short-sighted decision to turn back the dial on global progress. This decision needs to be seen for exactly what it is – an attack on humanity and future generations. It’s wrong and counterproductive.”

Costa announced plans to introduce legislation that would require Pennsylvania’s Department of Environmental Protection to follow the Obama Clean Power Plan. The EPA-designed plan involves reducing greenhouse emissions by 32 percent below 2005 levels by the year 2030.

President Trump has called the Paris Climate Accord a bad deal for the United States, saying that American involvement would not significantly reduce global warming. President Trump said he is open to renegotiating for a “better deal.”

Critics of the Paris Climate Accord and EPA regulations have said the efforts are harmful to the economy and an unnecessary burden on businesses. Costa and Fontana say investing environmental protection will lead to more jobs and economic growth.

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