600 companies plead with Trump to uphold Paris agreement

Source: By ANNA GIARITELLI, Washington Examiner • Posted: Thursday, January 12, 2017

More than 600 U.S. companies are urging President-elect Trump to uphold the Paris climate agreement once he takes office, and is calling for the continuance of low-carbon initiatives as a way to ensure a slower rise of the global temperature.

“All parts of society have a role to play in tackling climate change, but policy and business leadership is crucial,” Lars Petersson, president of IKEA U.S., said in a statement. “The Paris Agreement was a bold step towards a cleaner, brighter future, and must be protected.”

“Unilever remains committed to addressing climate change and implementing business practices that support a low-carbon economy,” said Kees Kruythoff, president of Unilever North America.

The coalition of companies argues that sticking to the agreement would cause businesses to turn billions of dollars in existing low-carbon investments into trillions of dollars. Levi Strauss and Company senior director of global policy and advocacy, Anna Walker, said ensuring that the U.S. maintains its climate leadership will ultimately ensure the country’s long-term economic prosperity.

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Support for the agreement has nearly doubled since the November implementation of the Paris agreement. The group of companies, which have combined annual revenues of $1 trillion and nearly 2 million employees, seeks to boost support for the international policy days before Trump takes office.

In 2012, Trump dubbed climate change a “hoax” created by China. Following his election win in November, Trump has softened his approach on the environmental issue, asking for proof of global warming and possible negative impacts changing business practices could have on U.S. companies. The incoming commander in chief has since said he will keep an open mind on the issue.

Among the hundreds of companies who want Trump to carry on Obama’s climate legacy are North Face, Vans, Veritas Technologies, VF Corporation, Starbucks, Nike, L’Oreal, Hewlett Packard Enterprises and Hilton.

Trump has tapped Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt to lead the EPA.


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