Like many people, we were shocked by last week’s announcement. Despite a few remaining pockets of hope, the U.S. officially withdrew from the Paris Climate Accord (PCA). In one fell swoop, America became just the third country in the world—alongside Nicaragua and Syria—to forgo signing onto the largest effort in history to address the ever-growing threat of climate change. But there’s still plenty of reason for optimism and we’re not giving up. In fact, we’re just getting started.
For those who are unfamiliar with the details of the accord, they’re pretty simple. According to its website, the agreement requires every participating country to “put forth their best effort” to reduce carbon emissions through “Nationally Determined Contributions” (NDC’s) and to strengthen their efforts in the years ahead. In other words, each country is obligated to adhere to criteria that it comes up with internally. There are no grand external benchmarks. It’s more like a self-assessment that each participant must stay true to by regularly reporting their emissions rates and implementation efforts. If you'd like more specific information about the PCA, you can read up on its details here.
President Trump and many other U.S. leaders believe combatting climate change works against American economic interests. But over the past week, 12 states and Puerto Rico have formed the U.S. Climate Alliance, which is committed to upholding the standards America originally agreed to before pulling out of the PCA. Perhaps more incredibly, hundreds of mayors, academic institutions, and business leaders across the country have come out as signatories of an open letter titled “We Are Still In.” The expansive list includes everyone from the mayors of New York City, Pittsburgh, Austin, Los Angeles, and Fort Wayne to companies like Google, Amazon, Apple, Adidas, and Annie’s. And now, we are formally adding the EPIC Provisions name to it.
To be clear, this isn’t supposed to be a political statement. It’s not written from any partisan angle, nor is it supposed to divide our broad customer base. Rather, it’s simply our way of letting people know that we are not sitting still. We’re going to keep fighting to protect our planet and all its inhabitants. After all, we've never been bystanders at EPIC. As a mission-driven company devoted to restoring our planet through regenerative agriculture practices that sequester carbon from the earth’s atmosphere, giving up isn’t an option. Not when the livelihood and safety of our children and their world is at stake.
The fact is, the Paris Climate Accord transcends borders, state sovereignty, or national interests. It’s seeking to address an issue that—whether we like it or not—affects all of us. No country or individual is exempt from its reach. And while we may not see the full impacts of rising temperatures, sea levels, and changing climates in our lifetime, our children will.
So here we are: committed. We’re still in. We hope you are too.
If you are a business owner and would like to add your name to the "We Are Still In" list, simply follow this link: https://ceres.secure.force.com/BusinessParisResponse/