Governor Jerry Brown in New York for Climate Talks

Governor Jerry Brown

If there is one thing that Gov. Jerry Brown of California is passionate about, it’s climate change. This is why he is in New York to attend the 72nd United Nations General Assembly that begins today. Having arrived on Sunday, the California governor has interacted with small-island leaders, Brazilian leaders as well as European leaders and he has assured them that he will support the fight against climate change. For instance, Gov. Jerry Brown met with the United Nations secretary general Antonio Guterres and discussed the Paris agreement future after the federal government had expressed its desire to leave. In previous governments, these meetings should be attended by the state department officials. However, things are quite different as the White House through chief White House economic advisor Gary D. Cohn has emphasized that the United States will leave the accord. He was speaking with allied ministers yesterday. This has left Democratic governors with the role of engaging in climate change talks in what is considered as informal team negotiations. This is the first time that the United States governors are taking the role of convincing world leaders. Experts say that the governors face a huge task ahead in convincing world leaders that states can play the role that used to be held by the federal government.

Washington Governor Jay Inslee is also attending the United Nations summit. During an interview, Inslee said that he would assure the world that they have allies in the US in the fight against climate change. It’s for this reason that the world should not brake in the efforts against the climate change. He also disagreed the idea that governors are just shadow diplomatic corps. Instead, he mentioned that the governors are in the sunlight and they will continue to shine. The General assembly session is expected to attract senior officials and leaders from over 200 countries where serious issues are discussed. Climate change is one of the issues that will be discussed this week. Stakes are still high for the United Nations as the United States has stated that they can only stay in Paris Agreement if only their demands are met. At the moment, the United States has not outlined its demands. Gov. Brown said that the states are up to the task as no official from Washington is interested in climate change issues. Hawaii Governor David Y. Ige will also be attending the meeting by the General assembly.


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