In an open letter to the University of Maryland, Baltimore (UMB) community, UMB President Jay A. Perman, MD, spoke of joining the leadership of hundreds of colleges and universities in the U.S. in support of the goals of the 2015 Paris Agreement on climate change. Here is the text of that letter:
To the UMB Community:
Last week, President Trump announced he would pull the U.S. out of the Paris Agreement, a landmark 2015 pact among nearly 200 nations to adopt green energy sources, cut carbon emissions, and limit the rise of global temperatures. The agreement calls for "the widest possible cooperation by all countries" to address the urgent threat of climate change.
The decision to withdraw the U.S. from the accord was met with broad resistance, here in Maryland and across the country. On behalf of UMB, I have signed We Are Still In, an open letter endorsing the ambitious climate goals spelled out in the Paris Agreement and pledging support for "forceful" action to reduce U.S. emissions.
In signing this letter, I've joined hundreds of U.S. college and university presidents, as well as hundreds more corporate leaders and state and city officials who remain dedicated to America's global cooperation -- and global leadership -- in fighting climate change. Baltimore Mayor Catherine Pugh has signed the letter, as have my fellow presidents in the University System of Maryland. In a statement, Gov. Larry Hogan said he remains a strong advocate for protecting Maryland's environment and supports efforts to combat climate change.
The signers of this letter understand, as do I, that transitioning to a clean-energy economy improves public health, protects our natural resources, advances our national security, and stimulates greater prosperity. I hope you'll consider making your own voice heard in this debate.
The Paris Agreement afforded us a historic opportunity to work with nations around the globe on urgent issues of climate change. But even without federal leadership on this issue, U.S. businesses, governments, and universities can come together to uphold our American commitment to protect the planet and its people. We cannot let this opportunity slip by.
Jay A. Perman, MD