‘If cities are invited to be at the table, I believe they will help accelerate the work that needs to be done’ said LA mayor Eric Garcetti

US mayors are seeking to go over President Trump’s head and negotiate directly at next month’s UN climate change conference in Santiago, they said as they met in Copenhagen for the C40 World Mayors Summit.

Los Angeles mayor Eric Garcetti, who rallied US mayors to commit to the Paris climate agreement after Trump announced his intention to withdraw the country in 2017, said he would ask the UN secretary general, António Guterres, on Thursday to give American cities a new role in UN climate talks.

“I’m going to bring it up with the UN secretary general,” Garcetti said. “If cities are invited to be at the table, I believe they will help accelerate the work that needs to be done. Hopefully, we can do it in concert with our national governments, but [we can do it] even where there is conflict.”

Garcetti, who was announced on Wednesday as the next chair of the C40 group of global cities, said he would use his position to seek “a more formal role in the deliberations” at the conference.

“The United Nations works directly with cities all the time … so they shouldn’t feel feel scared about jumping down to that local level,” he said.

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