President Trump has said the United States will pull out of the Paris climate agreement. He has rolled back a host of regulations to protect the environment, appointed climate science deniers to key posts in the administration and championed the use of fossil fuels, defying the scientific consensus that emissions from those fuels are a major cause of global warming.
On the campaign trail, Mr. Trump described climate change as a “hoax.”
Mr. Bloomberg, who was mayor of New York City from 2002 to 2013, has teamed up with one of Mr. Trump’s most outspoken critics, Gov. Jerry Brown of California, to press cities and states to reduce their own greenhouse gas emissions to help the United States meet its Paris agreement targets.
“For the United States to reach its commitment, much more needs to be done,” the two wrote in an opinion article published in The New York Times. “But the world should know: We are not waiting for Washington.”
Mr. Bloomberg has given tens of millions of dollars to environmental groups fighting coal-fired power plants. In 2014, Ban Ki-moon, who was United Nations secretary general at the time, appointed him special envoy for cities and climate change.
“Around the world, bottom-up solutions are leading the fight against climate change,” Mr. Bloomberg said in a Twitter post. “As the new @UN Special Envoy for Climate Action, I’ll work with state and non-state actors to help implement policies that reduce emissions & build resilience.”
Mr. Guterres on Monday did not mention the Trump administration, but criticism was implicit in his remarks. How society reacts, he said, will make the difference in winning what he called “the battle against climate change.”
“Governments are important, of course, because they can slow down this process, but the essential is the way societies as a whole react, and that is what Michael Bloomberg is leading in an exemplary way,” the secretary general said.
Mr. Guterres has described Mr. Trump’s decision to withdraw from the Paris deal as “a major disappointment.” The United States is the only country in the world to have announced its intention to withdraw.
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