When President Donald Trump announced that he was taking the US out of the 2016 Paris agreement, signed then by 195 nations within the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, it caused no great amount of chaos in the international community. His audacious withdrawal of support has caused the once-mostly cohesive agreement to fracture, in particular among the G-7 nations.

The decision has been so divisive it is also causing fragmentation and sectionalism within the United States itself. Shortly after President Trump declared that the country would no longer be bound by the Paris Agreement, three State governments, in turn, have announced that they will continue to hold onto the terms, even proposing the formation of an informal coalition of like-minded States that will not follow the Trump federal line.

Policy 'rebellion.'

In the wake of the hubbub kicked up by Donald Trump’s withdrawal from the Paris Agreement regarding Climate Change, three governors – Edmund Brown Jr. of California, Andrew Cuomo of New York, and Jay Inslee of Washington State – made their announcement. They intend to form a coalition of States that will continue to carry out the guidelines laid out in the agreement to curb the onset of climate change. In a way, their decision takes into State authority, the responsibility of keeping down greenhouse gas emissions from pollution that the federal government has cast off.

A statement released by Washington State Governor Inslee outlines this fact, calling on State and major city governments to step up in regards to climate action now that President Trump has removed it as a national priority.

“I am proud to stand with other governors as we make sure that the inaction in D.C. is met by an equal force of action from the states," he said. Inslee went on to describe the US withdrawal from the Paris Agreement as a “rebuke” to the hard and seemingly thankless work of preserving Earth for future generations.

From federal power to state power

President Donald Trump had criticized the Paris Agreement, signed last year by his predecessor Barack Obama on behalf of the country, for negatively affecting jobs. At the forefront of this upheaval is the American coal mining industry, as coal becomes frowned on as a greenhouse gas emitter.

Withdrawal from the Agreement was phrased as giving freedom to coal miners to once again work without environmental restrictions, something that has swayed coal workers to his side.

The states of New York, California, and Washington account for 10% of US greenhouse gas emissions. It is hoped that the proposed United States Climate Alliance they are forming will strive to keep to former President Obama’s pledge to reduce the country’s greenhouse gas generation 26-28% by the year 2025.

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