Last week on Thursday, Donald Trump announced that U.S. is pulling out of the Paris climate agreement in the White House Rose Garden. “In order to fulfill my solemn duty to protect America and its citizens, the United States will withdraw from the Paris climate accord,” Mr. Trump said. Instead, U.S. will begin negotiations to re-enter either the Paris accord or really an entirely new transaction on terms that he said are fair to U.S. businesses, workers and taxpayers.
“So we’re getting out, but we will start to negotiate and we will see if we can make a deal that’s fair. And if we can, that’s great, and if we can’t, that’s fine,” he added. The agreement, which 195 nations signed in December 2015, set a global goal to keep the planet from warming to a level that scientists say could keep the planet from launching into a tailspin of irreversible consequences.
The U.S. will now be one of only three countries out of 197 nations that aren’t signed onto the agreement, with the other two being Nicaragua and Syria. By calling the pact a “bad deal” for the United States and making withdrawing from it a key component of his “America First” campaign platform, Trump is definitely playing to the base. Pulling the United States out of the deal means Trump is siding with adviser Stephen Bannon and his base over the objections of centrists in his government and the business community.
Withdrawing from Paris would greatly please conservative groups, which have orchestrated an all-out push in opposition to the pact. Trump is clearly dismantling the Obama administration’s climate agenda by deciding to align the U.S. against nearly every country in the world. Although American and international officials warn leaving will hurt the country on the diplomatic stage.
According to Nature Climate Change study, the risk now is that Trump’s new energy strategy will drive up global CO2 levels at a perilous rate. Even with all of Obama’s proposed emission-reduction policies, the US was still on course to exceed its 2025 Paris pledge by over 1.6bn metric tons of carbon a year.
While there may be some positive short-term economic effects, Trump’s decision to pull out of the Paris agreement and not fight to address climate change would most likely have devastating long-term economic consequences for the US and the world. Also withdrawing from the Paris climate deal will earn the president bad reviews from allies in France and Germany who have urged Trump to take a more proactive approach to climate change.
Paris deal opponents, including the president, said the agreement gives countries like China and India a leg up economically over the U.S. because they are not cutting their emissions in real terms under it. Trump’s administration has yet to announce exactly how or when American will leave the Agreement. We can just hope that the fate of humanity rested in the hands of a single man proves no fatal.