Governor Brown to world leaders: ‘Wake up!’

Blasting the efforts of the United States, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Russia to undermine climate science as a “suicide mission” and “criminal enterprise,” Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr. recently implored the world’s leaders to “wake up” and “take action now” in a video message released ahead of the conclusion of the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Poland, COP24.

A transcript of the Governor’s video message follows:

To the leaders gathered in Poland for the Conference of the Parties, this is a message from California: Wake up! The planet is burning up. Carbon emissions are growing — this year has been one of the highest growth rates in recent decades. This is not a matter to be taken anything but very, very seriously.

The United States, I am sorry to say, does not represent the people of the United States. California, Washington, New York, Vermont and many, many other states, representing tens of millions of people, believe in the science of climate change — believe, and demand that we reduce our carbon emissions.

In California, we have set a goal of zero carbon emissions by 2045. We have taken other measures: We are introducing electric vehicles, building restrictions, cap-and-trade, renewable energy requirements upon our electric utilities — there is so much we can do. I’m not saying we’ve gotten there — our emissions per capita are entirely too high, but we are committed to do more.

We recognize the science undergirding the knowledge we have today on climate change. If we’re going to stay below 1.5 degrees centigrade from the industrial period, we have to take action now.

The actions and the behavior of the leaders of the United States, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Russia and other countries are not acceptable. This is a suicide mission upon which you have embarked. Pull back, the people of the world are asking you — men, women and children.

From California, I can tell you, people are dying because of climate change — in fires, in mudslides, in floods — and other parts of the country, in New York and North Carolina and Louisiana and Texas. This is serious stuff.

You represent humanity — over seven billion people are counting on you. Don’t resort to what will be condemned in future years as nothing less than a criminal enterprise.

Wake up, do the right thing. Leaders in Poland, this is your chance, this is your time. The people of California, the people of the United States and the people of the world expect no less. Take action, take action now.