RICHMOND – Governor McAuliffe and 11 fellow governors have sent a letter to President Trump urging him to continue America’s legacy of leadership in the fight against climate change by honoring the international Paris Climate Agreement.
“As both the Chair of the National Governors Association and the Chief Executive of the Commonwealth, I have seen firsthand the devastating and costly consequences of climate change both within Virginia and across the country,” said Governor McAuliffe. “National leadership on this issue is imperative to preserve our national security, our economy, and our way of life. I urge the President to honor the Paris Climate Agreement and keep our nation on track to meet the achievable goals it set.”
In addition to highlighting the costs of walking away from the agreement, the governors cited the successes they have seen from state-level efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. The Commonwealth’s electricity sector, in particular, has made significant strides towards a reduced environmental impact; between 2005 and 2014, carbon emissions from Virginia’s electrical generators fell by 21%.
Governor McAuliffe is a strong proponent of Virginia’s rapidly growing renewable energy sector. Since he took office, Virginia’s installed solar capacity has grown from a meager 17 megawatts to now more than 1,575 megawatts of solar currently in service or under development. The Commonwealth’s solar market is now the eighth fastest-growing market in the nation.