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These pages and sections capture news of climate change and stories about the groundswell of climate action by governments, companies, cities, the UN and civil society around the globe. To provide feedback, email us at press@unfccc.int Photo©Naziha Mestaoui

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Ahead of the UN climate change conference in Paris in December, California Governor Jerry Brown on Monday promised to step up climate leadership by his state, also by cooperating more closely with regional and other subnational governments to build political momentum for an effective universal climate change agreement in the French capital in December.

The governor has already issued an executive order to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in California 40 percent below 1990 levels by 2030 - the most ambitious target in North America, and in line with the best available climate science.

Speaking at a briefing in Los Angeles, Mr Brown said:

California is joining with other provinces and other states and even with countries, such as China and Mexico, to forge the international agreements and initiatives that are absolutely essential if we're going to avoid the catastrophic changes that are looming in the very near future.

Joining Governor Brown at the briefing, UNFCCC Executive Secretary Christiana Figueres welcomed California’s leadership and called on all non-state actors, including cities, regions, companies and investors to play an increasingly active role in the climate fight. She said:

Arresting climate change is too complex, too important, too critical, too urgent to rest only on the shoulders of those who are already acting. In that sense, this is a very, very clear call with Governor Brown to encourage other stakeholders to also put their shoulder to the wheel.

States and Provinces Ally to Keep Below 2 Degrees

Last month, Governor Brown convened international leaders from 11 other states and provinces, collectively representing more than $4.5 trillion in GDP and 100 million people, to sign a first-of-its-kind agreement to limit the increase in global average temperature to below 2 degrees Celsius.

The agreement, called the Under 2 MOU, provides a template for the world's nations to follow and other states and provinces are expected to become signatories in the weeks and months ahead.

The agreement builds on other international climate change pacts between California and leaders from Mexico, China, North America, Japan, Israel and Peru and the Governor's efforts to help forge and highlight scientific consensus around climate change.

Next month, Governor Brown is to join other international leaders, including former U.S. Vice President and Nobel laureate Al Gore and former president of Mexico Felipe Calderón, to speak at the Climate Summit of the Americas in Toronto, Canada.

Read the Government of California press release

Image: Press Office of the Governor of California

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