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Tucson, Phoenix mayors unite to tackle climate change

Posted at 10:27 PM, Nov 26, 2019
and last updated 2019-11-27 00:41:43-05

TUCSON, Ariz. — Tucson's mayor-elect is trying to tackle climate change alongside the mayor of Phoenix.

Climate action was one of the top priorities former Ward 1 Councilmember Regina Romero ran her mayoral campaign on. She will be sworn in on Monday, Dec. 2.

On Tuesday, she and Mayor Kate Gallego sent a letter to state congressional delegates asking for their help in her cause.

Tucson is the third fastest-warming city in the country, according to Climate Central. Phoenix is fourth on that list.

Data shows Tucson is already feeling the effects of climate change, according to Dr. Joellen Russell, a professor of geosciences at the University of Arizona.

"What that means is that we're basically getting here in Tucson -- more 105-degree days," Dr. Russell said. "And in Phoenix -- more 110-degree days."

That's exactly what Romero says she's trying to fight, calling on Arizona congressional delegates to remain in the Paris Climate Agreement.

In 2015, the United States and nearly 200 other countries formed the Paris Climate Agreement to combat climate change.

But earlier this month, the Trump Administration began the one-year process to officially withdraw the U.S. from the agreement. The President claims it would punish American workers and kill the coal industry.

"There's power in numbers," Romero said over the phone. "And having the largest city in Arizona, and the second largest city in Arizona represent our population -- our residents together -- is very, very powerful."