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At a UN climate conference in Germany today, the Trump administration talked up fossil fuels, including coal. That puts the U.S. at odds with 194 other nations, but some American entrepreneurs and politicians want to make sure the administration does not have the final word. Mark Phillips reports.
Despite the kid’s demonstration saving the world has been harder since the Trump administration announced its pullout from the Paris climate deal, there is an enthusiastic American delegation at this U.N. conference, but Washington didn't send it. State and city governments and businessmen like Michael Bloomberg did. "The American government may have pulled out of the Paris agreement, but the American people are committed to its goals and there is nothing Washington can do to stop us,"
Washington has other ideas. Its main pitch here is to promote coal which much of the world sees as exactly the wrong way to reduce the greenhouse gasses that cause global warming. The leaders of this alternative delegation like California Gov. Jerry Brown, say “Ignore Washington, listen to us.” "America, we're here, we're in and we're not going away, thank you very much"
And the 14 states who’ve come here say the U.S. can still reduce carbon output by a quarter over the next eight years as promised, partly because clean energy projects are also happening in some unlikely places. Russell Tencer of United Wind told an environmental tech conference in Lisbon Portugal, that he actually sells most his wind turbines in red states that voted Trump. The argument being heard at conferences like this is that, while it would be nice to have the support of the administration in Washington in fighting climate change, that support is not essential. In the end, economics, not politics will prevail and the newer forms of electricity generation, wind and solar, are, in the long term, not only cleaner, they are cheaper. Mark Phillips, CBS news, Lisbon.