ST. PETERSBURG, Fla — As his time as mayor of St. Petersburg winds down, Rick Kriseman is reflecting on the work he has been able to do with the city. And, last week, in front of an international audience of local and world leaders at the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Scotland, Kriseman was able to showcase what the city had already accomplished to tackle the climate crisis.
Kriseman attended the conference through his environmental work with the U.S. conference of mayors. On top of meeting world leaders like Prince Charles and others, the mayor said he spoke with the Biden administration about sending money directly to cities that want to address climate change, bypassing state legislatures.
"As mayors, we are really the ones doing the front-line work. Every day. And finally, thank gosh, we’re going to get some assistance from the federal government with funding that will help us accelerate our efforts," Kriseman said.
"You know, there’s not a whole lot that we’re seeing from the state governments. And not just in Florida, but around the country."
Kriseman added that he was impressed by the demonstrators who protested outside the conference. He said, unlike protesters in the U.S. who usually deny climate change, demonstrations in Glasgow were made up of people telling leaders to stop talking and start acting on climate change.