Science has provided a reliable projection of the impact of future emissions levels on climate change, including consequences for human society and the natural systems on which it depends; as well as the amount and timing of emissions reductions required to avoid the most devastating consequences of climate change. The 2014 IPCC Report noted that “continued emission of greenhouse gases will cause further warming and long-lasting changes in all components of the climate system, increasing the likelihood of severe, pervasive and irreversible impacts for people and ecosystems”; and that substantial mitigation and adaptation is required to limit these risks.
While the State of Maryland aims to reduce GHC emissions, municipal engagement remains limited. The below PGCMA resolution seeks to remind the State of its quote in the MCCC 2016 report: According to the 2014 report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), “effective adaptation and mitigation responses will depend on policies and measures across multiple scales: international, regional, national and sub-national”. It is important to recognize that the actions Prince’s County Municipalities take to mitigate climate change at the local level are integral to protecting the future and prosperity of not only our individual cities and towns, Prince George’s County, or even the state of Maryland but also the United States of America and the global community of which it is a part.
Until 2017, The United States was among 180 countries that signed the United Nations Paris Climate Agreement since April of 2016; a document which is in full force as of November 4, 2016. The agreement aims to strengthen the global response to the threat of climate change through a standard commitment by as many nations as possible to expeditiously peak and reduce GHG emissions, in order to maintain the average global temperature increase under 2 degrees Celsius (above pre-industrial levels). It also acknowledges the “common but differentiated responsibilities and respective capabilities” of each nation to contribute to the common objective, placing developed countries in a leading role. As leaders in highly developed cities and towns, one of the most developed counties, in the most developed county, we must act.
Recent Articles on the Impact of Climate in Maryland
PGCMA Climate Change Proposal