On Warm Miami Beach Mayors Talk Global Warming

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MIAMI BEACH (CBSMiami) — Miami Beach’s Mayor Friday was showing New York City’s Mayor a massive pump station, part of a half billion dollar plan to deal with sea rise.

But Beach Mayor Philip Levine, and New York City’s Bill De Blasio are not the only mayors on the beach this weekend.

More than 250 mayors, the National Conference of Mayors, is holding its annual meeting at the Fontainebleau, on the water’s edge, with climate change topping their list of concerns.

“This is not about right, this is not about left, this is about going forward and doing the right thing,” said Levine.

President Donald Trump’s disavowal of global warming, and withdrawal from the Paris climate accord, leaves many of the mayors worried.

“I’m extremely concerned because we can do all that we can as cities, and we still aren’t going to be able to accomplish what we need to really move the needle on this issue,” said Mayor Patrick Wojahn of College Park, MD.

With carbon emissions spewing into the atmosphere, and seas rising along with pollution, many mayors feel they’ve been left twisting in an ill wind.

“We are going to continue to do what we are doing as mayors, and we will get there, but I do wish we’d do more on the federal level, too,” said Mayor David Haubert of Dublin, CA.

Some mayors said the president needs to wake up to a citizenry concerned about global warming.

“I still have hope, because 85% of Americans live in cities whose mayors have pledged to reduce carbon emissions,” said Mayor Jim Brainard of Carmel, IN.

Many of the cities represented at the conference have pledged to follow the Paris Accord in every way they’re able, the president’s opposition notwithstanding.

“We are doing everything we can to reduce our carbon footprint. We have trolleys so there are less cars,” said Levine.

Miami Beach was honored with an award by the National Mayor’s Conference Friday for its efforts to fight climate change. Among other things, the beach has a program that offers monetary incentives to those who build energy-efficient buildings.

The conference continues through Monday. Former President Bill Clinton will keynote a Saturday luncheon.

More from Gary Nelson
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