NewsPinellas County


Former NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg brings message to fight climate change to St. Petersburg

St. Pete is getting $2.5 million in resources
Michael Bloomberg attends events in Iowa promoting film about climate change
Posted at 3:33 AM, Jan 03, 2019
and last updated 2019-01-03 18:55:32-05

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — Former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg announced Thursday that St. Pete will get $2.5 million in resources to fight climate change. The city is one of 25 in the nation to win Bloomberg's award.

St. Petersburg plans to use the resources to establish rules to protect "vulnerable" property, establish more solar programs, reduce the city's carbon footprint and reduce energy usage.

It comes at a crucial time for Tampa Bay. Some experts say rising tides could mean the bay area is in a very dangerous position if we ever get hit with a major hurricane.

Thursday's announcement is promising news for Toni Palmer, whose neighborhood in St. Pete's Shore Acres often floods in high tide...even without inclement weather. "I think we are headed for disaster," Palmer explained. "Until they fix the infrastructure and try to figure out ways to combat climate change, we're going to be in dire straights."

Bloomberg is tapping into mayors across the country to come up with new ideas to tackle climate change. The former NYC mayor recently co-produced a documentary called "Paris to Pittsburgh." The film tells the stories of regular Americans who are tackling climate change.

Bloomberg believes voters should demand Congress take action to fight climate change.

"It would be helpful if people would call their federal government representatives, senators and congressmen and say it's not a Commie plot, this is really happening my family and my business is in jeopardy do something about it," said Bloomberg. "This is a very, very serious issue and we're making progress in America."

Kriseman says the city is setting an example for the nation to follow. "Little thought had been given to our changing climate but today that is no longer the case," he said to a crowd gathered at Albert Whitted Park.

Bloomberg also met with local members of the gun reform advocacy group Moms Demand Action.

Bloomberg is considering whether to mount a 2020 presidential run as a Democrat. For the first six years as Mayor of New York, he was a registered Republican. He became an Independent in 2007 and a Democrat last year.