By Matt Heitner
In concert with other concerned companies from across the country, PG&E has joined the campaign to persuade President Trump to keep the United States in the Paris Climate Agreement.
This week, PG&E Corporation signed an open letter published in the New York Times, San Francisco Chronicle, Wall Street Journal and New York Post calling on the administration to stick with the accord negotiated by 195 countries within the United Nations framework on climate change.
Apple, Google, Facebook and Adobe were among the other companies signing on to the letter, which was organized by the Center for Climate and Energy Solutions (C2ES).
The letter to President Trump focused on the business case for remaining in the agreement: strengthening competitiveness; creating jobs, markets and growth; and reducing business risk.
“U.S. business is best served by a stable and practical framework facilitating an effective and balanced global response,” reads the letter. “The Paris Agreement provides such a framework.”
Separately, CEO and President Geisha Williams also signed an appeal initiated by Andrew Liveris, Chairman and CEO of The Dow Chemical Company, which was endorsed by 30 other chief executives, including Jeffrey Immelt of General Electric, Elon Musk of Tesla, and Bank of America’s Brian Moynihan.
Both appeals follow on the heels of an earlier letter, also signed by PG&E, to Secretary of State Rex W. Tillerson that urged continued participation in the Paris Agreement.
PG&E supported the agreement when it was being negotiated in December 2015. Former Chairman, CEO and President Tony Earley joined a California delegation led by Gov. Jerry Brown, spreading the message about how the state has succeeded in making clean energy investments while also expanding the economy.
“The Paris agreement is a major milestone in orchestrating a global response to the climate challenge,” Earley said at the time.
Williams reiterated the company’s position earlier this month in remarks she delivered at the Ceres Conference in San Francisco.
“The agreement sent a clear signal to business that policymakers around the world are committed to fostering a low-carbon economy,” Williams told the audience of corporate sustainability leaders and investors. “But, of course, the most important reason for us to stay the course is to have the greatest possible chance of achieving a sustainable future for the generations to come.”
PG&E has a long history of taking action on climate change — work that continues today as the company supports the transition to a low-carbon energy future while helping communities build resilience against climate change effects.
The company already supplies some of the cleanest energy in the country, with nearly 70 percent of the electricity delivered to its customers coming from greenhouse gas-free resources.
“It’s important for the business community to voice our support for taking action on climate change,” said Melissa Lavinson, PG&E chief sustainability officer and vice president of federal affairs and policy. “We’re here to serve our customers and we know how important it is to them that we remain steadfast in our commitment to addressing the climate challenge.”
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