Gov. Brown, Merkley decry president’s climate change move

SALEM, Ore. – Oregon Gov. Kate Brown and Sen. Jeff Merkley expressed serious displeasure with President Trump’s move to withdraw the U.S. from the Paris climate change accord.

Gov. Brown issued this statement:

“Climate change poses the greatest threat to Oregon’s environment, economy, and way of life. Oregon has a strong tradition of fighting climate change, and we will not back down. The consequences of climate change are already impacting our communities and threaten the long-term sustainability of our natural resource-based economies. Leading U.S. companies recognize the need to address climate change risks and opportunities through the Paris Agreement, and are wisely investing in low-carbon fuels and clean energy technologies to stay on the cutting edge of the global economy.

“It is irresponsible for the president to deny these real-world implications. But I will continue to work with leaders on the West Coast, across the country, and around the world to address the challenge of climate change. While Oregon is a small state, we can play a huge role in finding innovative solutions to preserve our natural resources, reduce carbon, and create a cleaner, and greener energy mix of the future.”

Here are Sen. Merkley’s comments:

“This decision may be a win for Steve Bannon and Scott Pruitt and those who share their extremist views, but it’s a loss for everyone else. If completed, Trump’s withdrawal from the Paris agreement will put the United States in the company of only two other nations on earth that do not belong to the pact: Nicaragua, which believes the agreement doesn’t go far enough, and Syria, which is in the midst of a horrific civil war.

“The American business community, including 58 Fortune 500 CEOs, strongly supports the Paris agreement. These businesses know that withdrawing will cede American leadership on the world stage, and diminish American economic opportunity. If we don’t aggressively lead the clean energy revolution, other nations will beat us—and they will capture the rewards in growing jobs and prosperity.

“Climate disruption is a planetary crisis, and we need every nation on the front lines of this battle. For America to retreat is a massive failure of leadership at a critical moment. An American retreat is great for the economies of China and India, and terrible for America’s economy. Donald Trump should quit damaging the American economy, and reverse this reckless and shortsighted decision.”