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Transcript of Speaker Pelosi, Bicameral Congressional Delegation to COP25 Madrid Press Conference

Washington, D.C. – Speaker Nancy Pelosi led a bicameral Congressional Delegation to Madrid, Spain for the 2019 United Nations Framework on Climate Change earlier this week.  The bicameral delegation held a press conference today.  Below is a full transcript:

Speaker Pelosi.  Good morning, everyone. 

Thank you for joining us on this Friday morning, as we report to you on our wonderful visit, short as it was, to COP25. 

Our message to that group there is: even though the President has withdrawn from the Paris Accords, ‘we’re still in.’ 

We’re still in to protect the environment for our children and their future.  We’re in because it’s a public health issue: clean air, clean water, food safety.  That it’s an economic issue about good-paying green jobs in our economy and throughout the globe.  It is a security issue, in terms of natural disasters and the rest, robbing communities of habitat and natural resources which can, in competition for such things, can cause conflict.  And, it is a moral issue, if you do believe as I do, that this is God’s creation, we have a moral responsibility to be good stewards of it, but if you don’t even share that belief – that we all agree that we have a moral responsibility to pass this planet on to future generations in a responsible way.

Young people; children in school, even in grade school understand that.  Hopefully, it will rise to the White House, as well. 

But, I’m very proud of the delegation that we had.  Our Chairmen, our Freshman, our Chairs of full committees and subcommittees, and you’re now going to hear form each of them.

Today the – what is it called?  The U.S. – Today, we are a pavilion – ‘We’re still in’ pavilion. 

We’ll highlight climate action from a bipartisan coalition from of over 3,500 representatives from all 50 states, spanning large and small businesses, mayors and governors, university presidents, faith healers, tribal leaders and cultural institutions.  This is under the auspices of the U.S. Climate Center. 

So, not only were we saying that we as Democrats in the Congress are still in.  America is saying we are still in.

And now it is my honor to introduce, one of our Chairmen, Congressman Frank Pallone of New Jersey.

Chairman Pallone.  Thank you, Madam Speaker.  

I just want to stress – first, commend the Speaker for bringing this delegation to Madrid.  As she said, it was so important to stress that we’re still in.  And the thing that was amazing to me, and I really want to bring out, is that when we got there, people were really looking for U.S.  leadership. 

They refused to accept the idea that the United States was going to withdraw, even though that’s what President Trump is now saying that’s what he wants to do, and they would repeatedly say to us that, if the United States is not continually involved, either because they’re in the agreement or they are involved in other ways, that this is not going to work.  Because, they don’t believe China or the European Union can take the leadership role and get other countries to get involved in this Climate Action Plan that came out of the Paris Agreement.  So, that’s why it was so important for us to be there. 

And, we know that the problem is only getting worse every day.  More greenhouse gasses, more climate events, but I also want to say from an economic point of view that we all believe that economic growth and our, you know, technological leadership is dependent on still being involved with climate change and climate action.  Because the countries that, you know, do the wind mills, do the solar panels, manufacturing, come up with new technologies to address climate change – those are the countries that are going to be the countries that are out front and have economic growth.  So, this is also important form an economic point of view.

Now, I just want to say, on behalf of the Energy and Commerce Committee, and we had a number of Members that came with us on the trip from our committee – we announced in July that we are going to achieve a goal of 100 by 50, in other words, carbon neutral by 2050.  We had a series of hearings, the last one was yesterday, and we are now moving forwards.

We’ve already done a number of bills.  We did Ms. Castor’s Bill, H.R. 9, that says we don’t want to withdraw from the Paris Agreement.  We did a number of energy efficiency bills, some of them give money back to states and towns, so that they can continue the effort.  We did a pipeline safety bill that addresses methane.

And, we’re now putting together draft legislation, within our jurisdiction that achieves – that will seek to achieve 100 by 50 goal, that I set forth.   So, I just want to stress again that ‘we’re still in,’ not only in that we went to Madrid, but also that we’re still in it, we’re doing things now to move us forward on a climate action plan. 

And, that’s why being there, I think, was so important and what we’re doing her is so important.

And, next is – I’m going to introduce the Chairwoman of the [Committee on Science, Space, and Technology], Eddie Bernice Johnson. 

Chairwoman Johnson.  Good morning.  It was a –

Reporter.   Good morning.

[Laughter]

Chairwoman Johnson.  It was a great pleasure to be able to see the rest of the world, assembled through representatives, address climate change on this planet.  And, I’m grateful to Speaker Pelosi for carrying the delegation and I felt so good to be there because, without the U.S., we would have looked as if we’d forgotten that we’re on this planet.

I’m Chair of the Science, Space and Technology Committee and we will continue our work using sound science and using the technologies to address the issues.  We would be very derelict as a nation to pretend that this is not reality, to pretend that we could leave everywhere else, but not in climate change, when that is the most critical issue facing this planet that we have started to realize.

So, we will continue our work, we will continue to use the technologies that are available to us for the research and we will also make sure that many jobs are created, as we look into the technologies that are available to us.

My second committee is Transportation.  We are looking at every area in that committee, as well, to make sure that we are not missing a step.

Our prayer is that the Senate will recognize that the House has taken some leadership.

I will now present to you, Mr. Raúl Grijalva, who is Chair of Natural Resources.

Chairman Grijalva.  Thank you, Madam Chair.

I also want to acknowledge and thank very much, Speaker Pelosi for putting the delegation together.  The Speaker asked a question over dinner about what would – what was the most, the biggest impression that, individually, we got from this trip and for me it was the issue of this expectation that this delegation had.

The expectation was that the United States was needed; that the expectation was that we would lead again, that we would reengage in a very profound way and to deal with the urgency of climate change, and not to ignore it, not to try to avoid the issue, but to engage in it.

And the reality is, as was stated before, requires a great deal of urgency.  It is not only a issue of survival for species and for human beings, it is an issue that deals with the economics and the future of generations in this county.   

And this visit, I think, reaffirmed for me the fact that we have a role, a principal role in the fight against climate change and changing the dynamic that we see before us, right now.  The fact that this Administration has chosen not to, in neither the will, nor the desire of the American people.  And, I think that our presence there reaffirmed that we’re still in it and that we are bringing – we brought to that, the will and the opinion and the sense of the American people, that this is a consequential issue, climate change, that it is urgent and that we must take steps.  And every committee, and this Caucus, is committed to that end.

And, I look forward to the work ahead, and I also look forward to the fact that we will thrust ourselves back to a leadership role, internationally, that deals with this question, provides leadership, provides the moral imperative, for everyone to do something about it.

Thank you, and let me introduce Chair of the Select Committee on Climate Change, Chair Castor.

Chairwoman Castor.  Thank you.  Good morning.  I’m Kathy Castor of Florida.  I chair the House Select Committee on the Climate Crisis. 

You know, all across America and across the world right now, young people are demanding climate action.  I want them to know that we hear you and we intend to take bold, creative action to confront the climate crisis.  We’re running out of times.

And, as President Trump and Majority Leader McConnell in the Senate, undermine our efforts to tackle the climate crisis, we went to Madrid, led by Speaker Pelosi and this fantastic delegation, to let the world know that the United States of America is still in.  Local communities, states, academic institutions, scientists, every day Americans are working to tackle the cost of the climate crisis.

It was heartening to see how welcome this delegation was.  There is a leadership vacuum, we heard from so many in attendance at the Conference of Parties.  The U.N. Secretary General said during his opening remarks that, ‘we’re at a point where we can chose a path of surrender or we can choose a path of hope.’ 

Well, the United States is a hopeful nation.  And we intend, this spring, here in the House of Representatives to release a climate action plan to lower our greenhouse gas emissions, to chart the course, to give our communities the tools they need to adapt to the rising cost of the climate.

This presents an enormous opportunity for our country to create good-paying, family-sustaining jobs, to make sure that we address inequalities and lift up the vulnerable across America.  We want to unleash American ingenuity, the ‘can-do’ spirit, and create a patriotic climate action plan that will secure for our country a sounder future, because we understand that we have a moral obligation to our kids and future generations to tackle the climate crisis, and that’s what we intend to do.

Now, I yield to Congresswoman Betty McCollum, who chairs the Appropriations Subcommittee dealing with so many of these issues.

Welocme. 

Chairwoman McCollum.  Thank you. 

And, thank you again, Speaker Pelosi.  It was really fabulous that the United States was in Madrid. 

I just wanted to just take a second to tell you that we had youth from all over the United States at Madrid.  Future leaders of our country, future engineers, future technology, future scientists ready to step up and carry the banner not only for this generation, but for the next generation in our fight to protect this planet.

Currently, right now, we’ve got plans in the future and you’ve heard some of the great, fantastic legislation that you could look forward to seeing in the coming months. 

We’re in the fight, right now in the Appropriations Committee to protect science, to protect clean air, to protect clean water – not only for today, but for tomorrow.  So, we’re still in it.

Thank you, again, Speaker Pelosi. 

Congresswoman Bonamici.  I’m Suzanne Bonamici from Oregon and I want to start by thanking Speaker Pelosi for taking the delegation to Madrid.  As we walked through he conference, people would come up to us and say, ‘Thank you. Thank you for being here.’

And, as the Co-Chair of the House Oceans Caucus, I’m glad that this Conference of Parties, the COP25, was known as the Blue COP.  With a recent report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change on Oceans and the Cryosphere, we know that the findings are dire, but we also know that the ocean, which has literally been taking the heat, because of absorbing carbon emissions, the ocean can be part of the solution. 

Some of us attended a great panel discussion about how the ocean can help be part of the solution, whether that be through restoring our habitats with mangroves and sea patches or capturing the power of marine energy.

So, again, I am thrilled that we were able to be a voice for the United States of America to say that we are still in. 

Yes, climate change is an existential threat.  But, it is also an opportunity, an opportunity to use U.S. leadership, U.S. innovation, U.S. technology and create a better future for our children and grandchildren.

And now I’d like to introduce my wonderful colleague from the Select Committee, Julia Brownley from California.

Congresswoman Brownley.  Thank you, Suzanne.   Good morning, and I also want to thank the Speaker and all of the delegates.  It was a great honor to travel with all of you too Madrid.

I say quite frequently when I’m at home in my district is, as lawmakers we really are not perfect.  And when we put together policies, we may make mistakes.

If you look at our tax policy, we make mistakes, and we can fix that with immigration.

But when it comes to climate and climate policy, if we make a mistake, we’re not going to be able to fix it.  And it is incumbent on us and the rest of the world that we act, and we act now.  We act with a laser focus, and we act boldly.

And I can say from being in Madrid that we were so proud to continue with a message of we are still in, but believe me, the rest of the world is in.  And it will take all of us, all of us to solve and address the climate crisis.

Thank you very much.

Congressman Huffman.  Thank you.  I’m Jared Huffman, and I was pleased that it’s more than just the House of Representatives and our allies in the Senate who are still in. 

This is the Blue COP, the Blue Climate Conference, and as Chair of the Water, Oceans and Wildlife Subcommittee, I was so pleased to see that American NGOs are at the forefront of leadership, even though this Administration isn’t leading on oceans or anything else right now.

American NGOs are partnering with climate vulnerable nations to tackle this forgotten dimension of climate change, the oceans.  And of course we know that it’s more than just rising sea levels and coastal storms­­.  It’s ocean acidification, it’s deoxygenation and yet, when the U.S. joins them in a leadership mode on this issue, there’s so much that we can do to protect and restore mangroves and salt marshes and sea grass.

And the great thing about that is that doing so will also make our coastal communities much more resilient to help adapt to climate change.

So, I’m looking forward to rejoining the world community and leading on climate change with that new focus on oceans and coastal resiliency.

Thank you, Speaker Pelosi.

Congressman Peters.  Good morning.  I’m Scott Peters.  I’m a member of the Energy and Commerce Committee, the Subcommittees on Energy and Environment and Climate, and I was particularly thankful for Speaker Pelosi for the invitation.  I was honored to be able to go and really proud of my colleagues here, who’ve made climate action a part of their Congressional service.

One of the things I heard yesterday, and what I’ve noticed increasingly from our colleagues on the other side of the aisle is this notion that we should go slow on climate action, because if India and China don’t act we won’t solve the problem.

Of course, it’s fallacious to say we should go slow because as my colleagues have explained; it’s in the United States’ interest to act on climate in our own right.

But if you got a problem with other countries, you got to be in it.  You got to show up in Madrid.  You got to show up next year in Scotland, and you got to talk to them.  Because it’s absolutely true we can’t solve this on our own.  This is a worldwide problem. 

But going to these conferences, going to these COPS, is exactly the right thing to do if you’re concerned about that.

So, we’re in it.  I have to say that the people we met with were very happy we were there, including by the way, a little plug for my world class scientists from the Scripps Institution of Oceanography from San Diego, California.  They were very prominent there. 

Everyone was happy to see us.  They are hungry for American engagement and American leadership.  We’re behind that.  We are in it.  We invite everyone else who is not in it, to get in it.

Congresswoman Dingell.  I’m Debbie Dingell.  It was an honor to be on this trip, and I want to first say that the Speaker’s presence there told the world that the United States was there.  She was a leader that everyone respected, and it was a very important message for people who are filling a void in our leadership.

So, thank you, Madame Speaker.

I’m just going to say a couple of things very quickly.

One is we can’t do this without bringing us all together.  While it was wonderful to meet the United Nations General Secretary, whose wisdom was incredible, to meet with other world leaders, the people who made the difference were the NGOs, the young kids, the environmentalists, who are desperate to win, to do something that’s going to make a difference, and we’re only going to do that if were all at the table.

So, we come back and know the importance of bringing labor – young people need to know that there are many of us who are committed  to working and getting this done.

Before we left, we took a cornerstone of the bill that Kathy and Frank, as Chair of the Energy and Commerce Committee, talked about, but we introduced a 100 by 50 bill that has more than 150 cosponsors already.  People are going to make this work.

And the other part that for me – it was an ocean – it was the Blue COP – but we also – I had the opportunity to talk to people about transportation.  I wouldn’t let anybody forget transportation.

[Laughter]

But we are almost 30 percent of the problem and were committed – we have to stay at the forefront of innovation and technology.  We’re not going to China or India or any other country get it.  We’re going to stand at the forefront of it.  It’s a competitive issue,  it’s a job issue and it’s our future generations.

It was a great trip.  Thank you, Madame Speaker, and now I turn it over to Rep. Mike Levin.

Congressman Levin.  Thank you.  I’m Mike Levin from Southern California. 

I was very honored to be one of the three Freshman on the trip.  I’m so grateful to Speaker Pelosi for her clarity of vision and her clarity of purpose on the trip, her strength on the international community.

Running for Congress, we were often encouraged: ‘know your purpose,’ and my purpose, as a clean energy advocate and an environmental attorney, was to come to Washington and be able to address the climate crisis.

I’m so incredibly grateful to get to serve both on the Select Committee on the Climate Crisis and the Natural Resources Committee, and I thank the Chairs of those Committees, Kathy Castor and Raúl Grijalva, for, as a Freshman, allowing me to demonstrate leadership and to introduce legislation and to work on this great and ambitious climate action plan that we’ll soon be releasing.

I’m absolutely committed to working with my colleagues on both sides of the aisle to address this issue.  And as my colleague and friend from San Diego, Scott Peters, has said usually we don’t have to travel very far in Southern California to find the worlds greatest climate scientists.

They’re all around us, and I was so encouraged to go to Madrid and to see the University of California and the Scripps Institution of Oceanography with a strong presence there.

Thank you very much, and it’s my honor to introduce my fellow Freshman from Illinois, Sean Casten. 

Congressman Casten.  Thank you, Mike.  I’m Sean Casten from Illinois’ 6th District. 

I think much like Mike, I campaigned for Congress last year on three issues: climate change, climate change and climate change.

[Laughter]

I don’t say that as a joke.  This is the existential risk we face, and our presence there was so important to let the rest of the world know that notwithstanding what’s in the White House, the American people understand the science is settled.

The NGOs, the universities, the American business community understands that when you spend money to shift from fossil fuel intensive assets that cost money to renewable and efficiency assets that don’t cost money to operate, that’s not a cost, that’s an investment.

There is no scientific reason not to act.  There is no economic reason not to act.

But we desperately need U.S. leadership at the table.

And as Chairman Grijalva said about we were thinking about really impactful moments, and I want to leave you with two comments we got.

The President of the Maldives, who is, you know, several feet of ocean level rise away from losing her entire country, said that ‘We can either choose to give up or we can choose to fight, and we do not intend to give up.’

I think she speaks for all of us when she says that.

And the second comment I’d share with you is a colleague from the U.K. who said that ‘The science is settled.  You’re either in the COP or you are against us, and if you are against us you need to be isolated on the naughty step.’

[Laughter]

We are still in it, we do not intend to be isolated on the naughty step and this time next year I hope that we can say that is the shared view of the entire United States government, not just the House and our colleagues from the Senate.

So, thank you.

Congressman Neguse.  Good morning.  Joe Neguse, representing Colorado’s 2nd congressional district.

First, I just want to say, we’re so deeply grateful to Speaker Pelosi. 

If there was one takeaway for me on this trip, it was, there really is a desperate need for United States leadership on the international stage, with respect to this issue and so many others, and that’s why we are so grateful to have a Speaker, in Nancy Pelosi, who would have the wisdom and the foresight and the vision to make fighting the existential issue of climate change a top priority for this House and to lead this distinguished CODEL to Madrid to tell our international partners that we are in fact still in.

And so we are very grateful to the Speaker, and personally, as a freshman Member, along with Representative Casten and Representative Levin, we are very grateful to have joined this distinguished group of colleagues.

Some of our more senior Members reminded us when we arrived back home here not every Freshman gets to go on a CODEL with the Speaker of the House, and I think it’s recognizant – it’s cognizant of the Speaker’s desire to ensure that we fight for the future generations of this planet.

Of course, this Freshman class is no stranger to that, having run on the issue of climate change in so many districts across the country.

I will also say that in every meeting we had with NGOs, faith leaders, young people, the U.N. Secretary General, one thing was clear, which was that there is a shared sense of urgency amongst everyone internationally that we have very little time to waste.

We must press forward with bold, comprehensive action to protect our planet, which is precisely what we intend to do under the leadership of Chairwoman Castor, who’s set out an expedited timetable to have the recommendations to the full House where ultimately, the distinguished Chairmen and Chairwomen behind us will take up the important legislative work ahead.

So again, I am grateful to the Speaker.  And with that, I’ve never introduced a Senator before, so I will – I want to –

[Laughter]

I want to make sure I provide an ample introduction of one of my favorite Senators –

[Laughter]

And as I said to him, one of my wife’s favorite Senators as well, who has been fighting on this issue long before many of us arrived in Congress, and that is Senator Sheldon Whitehouse.  We thank you for your leadership.

Senator Whitehouse.  Thank you, Joe.  I am one of Joe’s top 100 Senators.

[Laughter]

As a Senator from the Ocean State, it meant an enormous amount to me to be able to go to the Ocean’s COP and participate, but it also meant a lot to me to be a part of and add a little bit of bicameralism to such a powerful Congressional delegation.

The Speaker of the House, four committee chairmen and a large array of Members of the House who are deeply, deeply committed to climate change.  It was really terrific and the world was hungry for that. 

It also today marks, if you think that there is no hope at all, let me offer you a little ironic anniversary we have today.  On December 6th, today, 2009, nine years ago, this full page ad ran in the New York Times.  It described the science of climate change as, and I quote the advertisement, ‘scientifically irrefutable.’  And, it said if we don’t get this right and we don’t take action, ten years ago, that the consequences would be ‘catastrophic’ and ‘irreversible.’  Again, that is me quoting the advertisement and it was signed by Donald J. Trump, Donald J. Trump Jr., Eric F. Trump, Ivanka Trump, and the Trump Organization.

So, who knows?  Maybe we could have the 2009 Donald show up again, in which case, we could have some real progress but even then without that, there is bicameral action in the Senate, the House is under great leadership now and we will get this done. 

Thank you.

Thank you, Madame Speaker.

Speaker Pelosi.  Thank you very much, Senator, for enhancing our delegation by your presence, but more importantly for all of your work over a long period of time on behalf of saving the planet for our children and future generations and, again, it was an honor to have you on the trip.

And thank you for calling to everyone’s attention: the script there is very promising about what the signators were calling for in light of the – to President Obama – in light of the U.N. Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen.  We have had Paris since then.  The President has rejected that.

We hope – as you have heard me say over and over: ‘Public sentiment is everything,’ Abraham Lincoln – that the public sentiment, starting with young people, academics, scientists throughout America, mayors, state legislators and all the rest, who were present, NGOs, who were present – some present in Spain, some not, but all interested in making a difference for our future.

Science, science, science, science.  An answer to our prayers.  So much that we know and we’ve heard from scientists.

We had the opportunity to meet with the Secretary General, the King of Spain, to hear the President of Spain, but, as Debbie – Congresswomen Dingell said, the heart of the matter with meeting global NGOs, the national NGOs, the faith-based NGOs, to see what is happening.  Not only thinking globally, but acting locally to save the planet for our children.

It is an existential threat for this generation, it is urgent and as they said there, the reality of the crisis has to be met with the actuality of action that we take.  Our Members, as has been said, we have had 100 hearings already, the Climate Select Committee, headed by Kathy Castor, is preparing its report and then we will act upon that, legislatively.

We had invited the entire Select Committee, Democrats and Republicans, all on the same day.  We thought that we we’re going to have participation – family matters, whatever,  that didn’t happen, but we hope that we will have participation as we go along, because the public will weigh in.

So, I thank my colleagues for bringing such knowledge, vision, strategic thinking to our visit there.  They made a tremendous difference, were well-received and were very proud to join in wearing the pin: ‘We’re still in’ with the American flag on it.

Thank you all very much.  Thank you.

***

Questions?

Yes, ma’am.  On this subject. 

Q:  Yes.  Tiffany Stecker from Bloomberg News.  So, you – when you’re developing climate legislation which will come from this climate action plan that’s going out in the spring, are you planning to do something that could get Republicans on board or is this really laying the groundwork for when there is another president who –

Chairwoman Castor.  Yes, if you’ve been following the work of the Select Committee, you will have seen that there are many areas of bipartisan interest to act on, whether that’s in the agricultural sector, the difficult to decarbonize industrial sector, a great bipartisan interest in controlling methane emissions that are particularly damaging to the climate.

There is great interest on the tools that we provide to local communities to adapt and become more resilient.  And, we’re going to do everything we can to make this as bipartisan as possible, but a strange thing happens here in Washington because of the outsized influence of the outside fossil fuel companies, though.

And, we need folks across America, businesses large and small, those faith leaders, the social justice organizations, the religious organizations to stand up and talk to our GOP colleagues, to encourage them to be good partners with us going forward.

Speaker Pelosi. Did you want to say something?

Chairman Grijalva.  An example of bipartisanship.  On Wednesday, the Leadership – thank you, Nancy – will have ten bills on the floor, packaged into one, [H.R.] 729, and it deals with coastal resilience, science, all part of a package to deal with this question of climate change and the need for mitigation and adaptation and building resilience in that package.

And, yesterday, at our markup with a great deal – with many Republicans’ supporting the bill that was brought forth that had to do with establishing additional wilderness areas, Ms. Dingell’s bill, again, I think that there is opportunities there.  The pieces of legislation will be coming forth.  We’re not only – we’ll provide an opportunity for our Republican colleagues to join in, as they have on some other pieces of legislation, but, whether they join in or not, I think that the importance that the Leader – the Speaker just made is that we need to move forward.  And – but, the opportunity will be there.

Congresswoman McCollum.  Just also, the ocean issues tend to be bipartisan.  The Coastal Research Act to address ocean acidification, for example, which the House already passed – bipartisan. 

Congressman Casten.  Can I just quickly – I just want to make one comment.  We are absolutely going to try to be as bipartisan as possible.  But, I want to remind you of that President of the Maldives.  She does not care whether or not we passed bipartisan legislation.  She cares that we act.

And so, we will do the right thing.  But, for me personally, I will be led by Winston Churchill’s advice that the time for baffling half-measures has come to a close.  We’ve entered an era of consequences.

Q:  Speaker Pelosi, I just wanted to ask are you committing to doing major climate legislation after the Select Committee reports in spring?  Can we expect that before next year’s election?

Speaker Pelosi.  Yes.  That is the purpose of the Select Committee.  Not just to be an academic endeavor, but to report to the legislative committees so that we can act upon it.  And, build along the way, in the public, the fact that Congress is acting.

Thank you for your question because our colleagues know that when we came back one of the questions we had was what is Congress going to do now?  Well, Congress is going to act upon the science in a legislative way, with everyone at the table – whether it’s business and labor, enviros and labor, faith-based organizations and concerned scientists of America, the grassroots and the rest – to shape something that is unifying on this subject.

And, by the way, in other countries, this isn’t any – isn’t it interesting?  When we met with people from other countries, it isn’t an issue of difference between the parties or among the parties as the case may be.  Everyone agrees the challenge is there and that we must act.

And the next year the conference will be in Glasgow, and we already met with the person who is heading that up.  I guess her title is now President McGuire, and she was telling us that she instituted her work under leadership of Prime Minister Theresa May and so obviously the U.K. 

This is a unified position, but we found – we’ve been finding that over the years across the globe.  The urgency, the urgency is there, but it is pretty exciting, and we must act.

Good news from the Senate that there’s some – at least private conversations would you say – of interest in doing something.  We just hope that the President will change his mind. 

Next year, we have the G7 meeting in the United States.  What happens at the G7 – you know that the G7 Heads of State takes place, but you may not be aware that following that by a month or two is the G7 Heads of Parliament.

And so we – I will be hosting the G7 Heads of Parliament.  At the last meeting, which was in Brest, France, to talk about the oceans – they didn’t talk about it at the Heads of State meeting , but we did at the Heads of Parliament meeting.

We announced our theme, which is: Climate Crisis: Economic and Environmental Justice.  It was the environmental justice is a very important part of this, as we learned at the Vulnerable – as we further learned at the Vulnerable Nations Conference, not only for vulnerable nations, but for vulnerable people within – the indigenous people and the rest – within all of our countries.

So, we’re going to be having that.  What is curious to me is when we announced our title here about a few weeks ago, the White House said ‘Well when we have the G7 here, we’re not going to be talking about climate.’

Well, hopefully we can change the political climate of all of that between now and then and that they will – an issue they cannot avoid.

So again, I thank all my colleagues for all the actions they have taken, for the experience, judgment and sense of purpose that they bring to this.

And again, we invite the fullest participation, the outside mobilization, which will make all the difference in the world.

Thank you all. 

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