Schwarzenegger launches state initiative to terminate pollution — with or without Trump

Former California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger is unveiling an environmental handbook to help state legislators enact policies that help in the fight against climate change and protect clean air — regardless of the White House’s actions.

The Hollywood movie star is scheduled to present his new Digital Environmental Legislative Handbook to 125 legislative leaders during his keynote address at the National Caucus of Environmental Legislators on Friday in Cambridge, Mass.

Schwarzenegger is set to tell the lawmakers that they do not need to wait around for Washington before taking decisive, bipartisan actions to protect the environment.

“Legislative leaders in state capitals across the United States are filling the vacuum left by Washington, especially when it comes to passing laws that protect the environment and promote economic growth,” Schwarzenegger said in a statement.

This initiative comes at a time when the U.S. government’s commitment fighting climate change is in question. President Trump has long dismissed climate-change science and has publicly ridiculed Schwarzenegger on other issues. At the start of June, he announced that the U.S. would withdraw from the Paris Agreement.

Jeff Mauk, the executive director of the National Caucus of Environmental Legislators, told Yahoo News that his group was developing the handbook long before last year’s presidential election. But he said state action is more important now than ever before.

“Each state is going to find solutions that match its economy and needs,” he said. “People from all across the spectrum are recognizing the economic benefits: both of addressing climate change before it becomes a more expensive problem and the job growth available from the new energy economy.”

Former California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger delivers a speech at the Austrian World Summit on climate change in Vienna, Austria, June 20, 2017. (Photo: Heinz-Peter Bader/Reuters)

The USC Schwarzenegger Institute, dedicated to advancing post-partisan solutions to a slate of policy issues, worked with the environmental legislative caucus to develop the online resource Schwarzenegger will roll out Friday: a curated list of important information about bills regarding air quality, human health, climate change, energy efficiency and renewable energy.

Mauk said his organization is always looking for ways to provide more resources to their members, more than 1,000 members from both parties in all 50 states.

“This issue…

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