Obama talks at climate change summit as mayors sign charter


Dozens of mayors from around the world signed a "Chicago Climate Charter" on Tuesday at a summit created to address concerns following President Donald Trump's rejection of the Paris climate accord.

In lieu of the nation's withdrawal from an global agreement on climate change, 50 municipal leaders from around the country, including Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler, signed a charter Tuesday committing their cities to emissions reductions.

Chicago officials billed the North American Climate Summit, which began Monday evening, as the first of its kind for the city.

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Obama talked about the lack of USA leadership on climate issues in Paris on Saturday. The Paris accords set targets for reducing greenhouse gas emissions and limiting the rise in average global temperatures.

"All the USA cities signing the charter are making commitments in support of America's Pledge, which sends a strong signal to the world that we will keep moving forward toward our Paris goal, with or without Washington".

Earlier, Obama also discussed climate issues with Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo.

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The list of confirmed attendees includes British Prime Minister Theresa May and her Spanish counterpart Mariano Rajoy as well as around 10 African heads of state and leaders from under-threat Pacific islands, the French presidency said.

He says 51 mayors will sign a charter and discuss solutions including expanding access to public transportation. Trump has said the terms of the agreement should be more favourable to businesses and taxpayers.

Without mentioning Trump by name, Emanuel, a former White House chief of staff to Obama, said Trump is in denial on climate change, but shouldn't ignore science.

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"They're entitled to their own opinion, but not their own facts", he said.