Minnesota joins states that support Paris Agreement, believe in science

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Windmills at dusk in Minnesota: The horror! David Brewster, Star Tribune

As of Monday, 13 American states are joining the entire rational world in supporting the Paris climate accord Donald Trump just pulled the United States out of.

After Trump's ham-fisted, baloney-brained announcement last week, three states -- California, Washington, and New York -- announced they didn't need the president's permission, and would take the steps to cut their emissions in keeping with Paris, anyway. Today, 10 more states joined the "U.S. Climate Alliance."

Among them was Minnesota, with Gov. Mark Dayton saying he's "very pleased" to bring the Land of 10,000 Lakes in line with the thinking people of this planet.

Said Dayton:

"President Trump’s withdrawal will cause serious damage to our environment and our economy. Nevertheless, Minnesota and other states will show the world what we can achieve by working together to conserve energy, to use cleaner and renewable energy, and to leave a livable planet to our children and grandchildren."

 Already, Minneapolis Mayor Betsy Hodges and St. Paul Mayor Chris Coleman had joined with 200-plus American mayors who pledged last week to continue "increasing investments in renewable energy and energy efficiency."

Under the 2007 Next Generation Energy Act, Minnesota already has a stated goal of producing 25 percent of its energy from renewable sources by 2025. We're actually on pace to easily surpass that figure -- 21 perrcent of our energy was renewable in 2015 -- and this year, the Dayton administration and a small bipartisan group of legislators tried pushing the state's goal to 50 percent renewable energy by 2030; legislative majorities balked. 

How much can states and cities do voluntarily, without the feds? Some! The Paris accord calls for a 26-28 percent reduction in emissions from 2005 levels -- an amount which is probably too little, too late, and which America already wasn't on pace to hit -- by 2025, with the ultimate goal of... well, saving the planet as a place that can sustain a few billion humans. Big, if true. [Editor's note: True.]

Today's wave of states also brings Massachusetts, Oregon, and Virginia on board the ark. (At present, all 13 states saying they'll abide by Paris have Democratic governors.) The science-believing bloc has also pitched itself as a collaborative effort for "the sharing of information and best practices" among partner states. So if California cracks one part of the climate code, they can tell, Delaware what's up, or vice versa.

Expect some nihilists to sue Mark Dayton and say what he's doing is unconstitutional. Expect Dayton to care more about the state of Minnesota than them, and to do it anyway.

Watch this space in the future for updates about this planet having human life.


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