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The group represents just 35% of America's total greenhouse gas emissions. Photo: Martin Meissner / AP

The issue

Former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, California Gov. Jerry Brown and other leaders representing more than a dozen states and hundreds of U.S. cities are in Bonn, Germany, this week to tell the world America is still on board with tackling climate change. The group just released a report that said if these non-federal entities were a country, their economy would be the third largest in the world. It also said the group represents nearly half of all Americans and more than half of the U.S. GDP.

The facts

The group largely represents America's coasts, where a lot of people live in big cities, but that's not where most of the greenhouse gases are emitted from coal, oil and natural gas production. The group represents up to 35% of America's total greenhouse gas emissions, according to the report's appendix data. That means this group represents roughly less than 5% of the world's emissions, despite comprising an economy that's the world's third-largest.

Why it matters

The report released here in Bonn is seeking to be optimistic, but it also concedes more action will be necessary. The biggest reductions would need to come from the fossil-fuel emitting states not currently on board.

The 35% figure -- not highlighted as part of the report's release -- underscores why federal action is essential in making sizable cuts in greenhouse gases. That's clearly going to be harder at a time when President Trump has said he intends to withdraw the United States from the Paris climate deal.

Go deeper

Supreme Court agrees to hear challenge to affirmative action at Harvard, UNC

Photo: Al Drago/Getty Images

The Supreme Court on Monday agreed to hear a pair of cases challenging the consideration of race in the college admissions processes.

Why it matters: The conservative high court's ruling could determine the future of affirmative action in higher education.

Europe's energy reliance on Russia is a crucial shield for Putin

Photo: Pavel Bednyakov/Sputnik/AFP via Getty Images

Cracks in the NATO alliance regarding sanctions for Russia should President Vladimir Putin order troops into Ukraine are in large part based on energy supply concerns.

Why it matters: Russia holds tremendous leverage over some European countries because it provides roughly 40% of Europe's natural gas supply. In Germany, this figure is greater than 50%.

Why the Fed might want to jolt the markets

Fed chair Jerome Powell at a hearing earlier this month. Photo: Brendan Smialowski-Pool/Getty Images

So far, financial markets are cooperating nicely with the Federal Reserve's efforts to restrain inflation. They're doing the Fed's work for it by creating tighter financial conditions, in a distinctly non-panicky way.

  • But as the central bank's policymakers meet this week, an underlying question they face is whether the adjustment is happening too slowly.