by WorldTribune Staff, June 8, 2017
North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper has put an estimate of alleged damages by man-made climate change ahead of the state’s economic health, the state’s Republicans said after Cooper announced he will sign on to the Paris Climate Agreement.
“Most North Carolinians believe it’s past time to reverse course on the job-killing overregulation of the Obama era – and the Paris Accord was a serious threat to President Trump’s ability to move our nation toward energy independence and cut unnecessary government red tape,” NC Senate leader Phil Berger said in a Facebook post.
“Here in North Carolina, it would have driven up electricity bills, jeopardized good-paying jobs, and harmed our economy – while achieving few real gains to protect the environment.”
Cooper signed an open letter supporting the Paris deal, joining more than 1,000 other public officials and business leaders, including the governors of California, Connecticut, Oregon, New York, Rhode Island, Virginia, Washington, and Hawaii, the Carolina Journal reported on June 6.
“Pulling out of the Paris Accord is wrong for our country, our children, and the generations to come,” Cooper said. “North Carolina’s commitment to clean air and a healthy environment will remain a priority despite the lack of forward thinking leadership from the current administration.”
“It is imperative that the world know that in the U.S., the actors that will provide the leadership necessary to meet our Paris commitment are found in city halls, state capitals, colleges and universities, investors, and businesses,” the governor said.
President Donald Trump pulled the U.S. out of the Paris accord last week.
Conservative members of the NC House said that while the economy is priority No. 1, they aren’t ignoring the environment, citing House Bill 589, which would ease some of the subsidies and mandates for the renewable energy industry.
“House Republicans are focused on North Carolina’s energy future and the best interests of our citizens … by moving legislation that has broad support from renewable power developers, utilities, and ratepayer protection groups alike,” said Joseph Kyzer, a spokesman for NC House Speaker Tim Moore.