Minnesota undermines White House at UN climate talks

Climate activists attend the March for Climate in Poland
Climate activists attend the March for Climate in a protest against global warming in Katowice, Poland, on Saturday as the COP24 UN Climate Change Conference takes place in the city.
Alik Keplicz | AP

You're probably seeing COP24 in the news a lot this week.

It's shorthand for the 24th Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change.

It's a large gathering of leaders from around the world in Poland to discuss solutions to climate change.

J. Drake Hamilton, science policy director for Fresh Energy, is one of the Minnesotans in attendance. She said they're in Poland to show the state and its institutions are able to meet their share of the Paris climate accords — which the U.S. abandoned at a federal level — and move away from coal and toward renewable energy sources.

States can have a big impact on the country's overall carbon emissions through economic commitments, policy and market forces.

"These are what we call bottom-up efforts on deep de-carbonization," she said, "and it's an example of sectors across the Minnesota and U.S. economy working in collaboration."

Hear MPR News chief meteorologist Paul Huttner's entire conversation with Hamilton on the audio player above, or subscribe to Climate Cast.