"Our climate is what gives us our precious life," Langston said. "We must be proactive to protect our climate."
The agreement allows for cities to set their own greenhouse gas reduction targets, but commits each community to strive to meet the goals set out in the Kyoto Protocol. If it were adopted by the U.S., the Kyoto Protocol would require a 7% reduction in 1990-level emissions to be achieved by the year 2012, according to statistics gathered by Ted Heisel, director of the Missouri Coalition for the Environment.
"In contrast to these local efforts, it may be years before the federal government adopts meaningful measures to deal with global warming. Just two weeks ago, it was revealed that a top environmental adviser in the Bush Administration has long been doctoring government reports in an effort to downplay the problem," Heisel said. "Ironically, the official resigned last week and went to work for Exxon-Mobil."
The agreement calls for cities to meet these goals through measures such as promoting transportation efficiency, investing in renewable energy development, retrofitting government buildings, and adopting land use policies that discourage inefficient development.
The agreement and other background information may be viewed at the City of Seattle's website. The Coalition also provides assistance to anyone who wants to seek endorsement of the agreement by their mayor. For further info, send an email here.