ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (FOX 13) - What do congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, Pope Francis, and St. Petersburg Mayor Rick Kriseman have in common? They are among 100 people named as difference-makers on global climate issues.
The list from apolitical.com showcases those who have had a strong, positive impact on influencing public policy dealing with climate change.
The organization is based in London and has the mission of connecting public servants and business leaders in a global network.
“To be listed with them... It’s a huge honor,” Mayor Kriseman told FOX 13 Wednesday.
Kriseman is known as a hardcore progressive. He has staff devoted to an action plan to measure greenhouse gasses throughout the city. The goal is for St. Petersburg to run 100-percent on clean energy.
“I hope that it opens some doors,” Kriseman said. “The more people that see what we are doing, like what we are doing… may be willing to support it financially, too.”
The city and mayor are no stranger to environmental problems. Kriseman faced tough criticism in 2016 when the city's sewage system failed during summer storms and millions of gallons of partially treated sewage were dumped into the bay.
“We’ve put that to bed,” he said. “We’ve been very aggressive in addressing the problem and not kicking that can down the road.”
The city is now well into a five-year, $305 million plan overhauling the sewage system, with no more significant spills reported.
St. Pete was among 25 cities to win Bloomberg Philanthropies’ climate challenge. The city earned a $2.5 million prize to help fund cutting its carbon emissions.