USA: NGOs & firms reaffirm commitment to fight climate change following Trump's limitations to climate actions

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13 April 2017

Firms reaffirming commitments to climate action criticised over controversial environmental policies

Author: Emily Atkin, New Republic

"The corporations defying Trump on climate change are not your heroes", 3 Apr 2017

President Donald Trump signed an executive order last week that aims to unravel former President Barack Obama’s environmental legacy…In an implicit rebuke of Trump, some of the country’s richest companies [such as Nestle, General Electric etc.] issued statements reaffirming their commitment to fighting climate change…But…anodyne statements about climate change are a cheap and easy public-relations victory. None of the above corporations indicated that they would fight Trump’s order [or] mentioned the executive order at all…Moreover, not all of these companies are environmental heroes in their own right. Amazon, for instance, has been widely criticized by environmental groups for avoiding transparency about its own carbon emissions [and] Nestlé…continues to fight environmental groups in court over its practice of extracting millions of gallons of water from drought-stricken regions of California… Duke Energy…raised some eyebrows when it vowed to “continue to move forward” in reducing carbon emissions [since] this is the same company that’s constantly being cited for violating environmental regulations…Many of these companies are making important strides to reduce their environmental footprints…But…they are acting in response to consumer pressure…The good news is that this empowers consumers to vote with their dollars…

[article also mentions Apple, Microsoft, General Mills, Google]

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30 March 2017

Major US companies stick with climate pledges while Chamber of Commerce supports Trump's move to weaken regulations

Author: Christopher Flavelle, Industry Week (USA)

"America's largest manufacturing companies stick with climate pledge after Trump pivot", 30 Mar 2017

Many of America’s biggest corporations including Apple Inc. and Wal-Mart Stores Inc. are sticking by their pledges to fight climate change even as President Donald Trump guts his predecessor’s environmental policies [by signing] an order…that tells the Environmental Protection Agency to reconsider former President Barack Obama’s climate rules, and rescinds a series of orders Obama issued to embed consideration of climate change in government actions…Business’s biggest lobbying force supports Trump on this issue. The U.S. Chamber of Commerce welcomed Trump’s order calling that shift “vital to stimulating economic growth.”...But many of the group’s members and other corporate titans supported Obama’s Clean Power Plan, or have set their own goal…Other companies… said they would keep pursuing lower emissions in their own operations…Many energy businesses welcomed Trump’s rollback. The Independent Petroleum Association of America…joined the Chamber of Commerce in praising his move… [Despite these pledges] some environmental groups cautioned that action from the private sector wasn’t enough to make up for the pullback in federal policy.

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28 March 2017

USA: Trump to sign executive order slashing climate change regulations; environmental groups vow to challenge order

Author: Valerie Volcovici, Reuters

"Trump to sign order sweeping away Obama-era climate policies", 28 Mar 2017

U.S. President Donald Trump will sign an executive order on Tuesday to undo a slew of Obama-era climate change regulations, a move meant to bolster domestic energy production but which environmentalists have vowed to challenge in court.The decree, dubbed the "Energy Independence" order, will seek to undo former President Barack Obama's Clean Power Plan requiring states to slash carbon emissions from power plants - a critical element in helping the United States meet its commitments to a global climate change accord agreed by nearly 200 countries in Paris in December 2015.It will also rescind a ban on coal leasing on federal lands, reverse rules to curb methane emissions from oil and gas production, and reduce the weight of climate change in federal agencies' assessments of new regulations..."The previous administration devalued workers with their policies. We can protect the environment while providing people with work." [said an administration official]...Environmental groups have promised to challenge the orders...Green group Earthjustice said it will fight the order both in and out of court...

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