Brazil states forge ahead in climate change fight despite Bolsonaro ambivalence

(Reuters News, 26 Apr 2019) Twelve state governments have agreed to start a state-level climate council, aimed at fulfilling the country's Paris Agreement commitments.

State governments in Brazil have agreed to work toward fulfilling the country's Paris Agreement climate change commitments, despite far-right President Jair Bolsonaro's ambivalence over the pact.

Bolsonaro said on his campaign trail he would withdraw Brazil from the accord, although later walked back those remarks. The country remains party to the agreement, with a commitment to reduce its national emissions by 37 percent by 2025.

Representatives for 12 state governments made the commitments at an event in Rio de Janeiro that ended late on Thursday, according to Alfredo Sirkis, the coordinator of the Brazil Forum for Climate Change, which organized the event.

Those states account for just over half of the country's gross emissions of carbon dioxide equivalent, according to data compiled by the Climate Observatory, a Brazilian non-government organization.

The move parallels 23 U.S. states that have committed to upholding the country's prior national commitment to cut greenhouse gas emissions after President Donald Trump pulled out of the Paris agreement, Sirkis said.

But unlike in the United States, Bolsonaro has not pulled out of the Paris Agreement and the states are acting preemptively in the face of uncertain climate change policy at the federal level, he said.

External link

Reuters News, 26 Apr 2019: Brazil states forge ahead in climate change fight despite Bolsonaro ambivalence