Governors celebrate state leadership to address climate change

by Mike Stevens, Washington State Director

State leaders gathered today to announce that Washington, 14 other US states and Puerto Rico are on track to meet their share of the goals set in the Paris Climate Agreement, reducing emissions across all economic sectors - and developing clean energy that benefits the economy in parallel. As Governor Jay Inslee emphasized "We've exploded the myth that you can't defeat climate change and grow the economy at the same time."

These states are harnessing the opportunity to model for the nation and the world innovative actions to limit carbon, transition to cleaner energy, and prepare our communities for a changing climate. We are all in for this effort in Washington state, where climate change is already bringing increased risks from fire, flooding, and rising seas.

Consequences of flooding in the Snoqualmie Valley, 2015. Photo by TNC.

Consequences of flooding in the Snoqualmie Valley, 2015. Photo by TNC.

Climate change impacts us all, and we must come together for solutions that work for all of our society--tribes, urban and rural communities, farmers, industries and others. We are proud to work with Gov. Inslee and our partners in other states to advance this work.


Learn about the proven climate solutions and adaptations underway throughout Washington


In June, 2017 Governor Inslee joined Governors Brown and Cuomo to form the U.S. Climate Alliance – a bipartisan coalition of states committed to reducing greenhouse gas emissions consistent with the goals of the Paris Agreement. The Alliance also released a study detailing emissions across all economic sectors and outlining new avenues for further bipartisan, interstate action.

Since its establishment, more than a dozen states and Puerto Rico have joined. Ranging from Hawaii to Massachusetts to newest member North Carolina—the coalition represents more than 36 percent of the U.S. population and has the combined economic activity of at least $7 trillion, the equivalent of the world’s third largest economy.

Governors Andrew Cuomo (NY) and Jay Inslee (WA) join former US Secretary of State John Kerry to announce progress of the US Climate Alliance. Photo by TNC.

Governors Andrew Cuomo (NY) and Jay Inslee (WA) join former US Secretary of State John Kerry to announce progress of the US Climate Alliance. Photo by TNC.

States have shown tremendous leadership on climate change, and this work is essential to building a low-carbon future that promotes both clean air and economic prosperity. The Nature Conservancy continues to believe that climate change is the most urgent threat to our economy, our communities, and to nature itself, and we look forward to engaging with the U.S. Climate Alliance as its work unfolds. We will continue to work in the United States and around the world, with governments, businesses, and individuals as they take action to reduce carbon emissions, foster coastal resilience and adapt to impacts.

Explore our work to tackle climate change