Environment

Report: Trump Expected to Withdraw From the Paris Climate Accord

JM Ashby
Written by JM Ashby

I think we all saw this coming last November, but things are about to get very real.

An administration source says Trump will withdraw from the Paris accord this week.

President Donald Trump will follow through on a campaign pledge to pull the United States out of a global pact to fight climate change, a source briefed on the decision told Reuters, a move that promises to deepen a rift with U.S. allies.

Trump, who has previously called global warming a hoax, did not confirm the decision in a post on Twitter, saying only, "I will be announcing my decision on the Paris Accord over the next few days."

Trump refused to endorse the landmark climate change accord at a summit of the G7 group of wealthy nations on Saturday, saying he needed more time to decide, and promised an announcement this week.

Immediately after the election, this was the number one thing that literally kept me awake at night. And it's not about me. I'm concerned, as are many people, that my two young nieces are going to inherit a world where irreversible climate change is a fact of life. One of them is traveling to Florida this week with her grandparents but, when she's my age, a significant portion of Florida could be under water.

With all of that said, there are some reasons to be optimistic. Most major cities and some states have already taken their own actions and will remain committed to going green even if the federal government under Trump does not. Because of their size and impact on the environment and economy, major cities under Democratic leadership can and already have made a significant difference. Market forces have also had an impact; solar energy is now among the cheapest forms of energy and, increasingly, it doesn't even make sense to use draw energy from more expensive, dirtier sources.

It's ironic when you consider that Trump's decision could have the greatest negative effect on conservative areas of the country that voted for him; areas where elected leaders are not inclined to take their own initiative. Even some diehard red states have set goals for renewable energy, but those same states are not necessarily prepared to invest in redundancy and adaptation. They aren't prepared for what's coming, but you can bet they'll hold out their hands in Congress when their communities are destroyed.

Meanwhile, this is another major global issue that Trump is ceding American leadership on. Trump already gave up global leadership on trade to China by abandoning the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) and he'll be giving up leadership on climate change to Germany and China if he abandons the Paris climate accord. You know, those Germans, the people Trump says are "very bad."

By withdrawing from the Paris accord, the U.S. will join a very short list of countries that includes Nicaragua and Syria as the only countries not committed to it. Even when Trump is gone, the rest of the world will rightfully remain skeptical of American leadership and doubt our commitments.

  • Ellen Kuhlmann

    Syria, Nicaragua and us. Yippee..

  • Badgerite
  • Badgerite

    Because he hasn’t done enough stupid, dangerous, damaging stuff yet.

  • Aynwrong

    The real welfare queens:

    “They (Red states) aren’t prepared for what’s coming, but you can bet they’ll hold out their hands in Congress when their communities are destroyed.

    I strongly suspect that this motivated by a few things. First, A slap at Barack Obama’s legacy. This is a total waste of time. Obama’s policies are vulnerable. His legacy is written in stone (and frankly his policies have been holding their own). Second, it’s called the “Paris Accords.” Which is of course just a name, but to the loyal cultists it’s putting “America first.” Third, it’s a temper tantrum. Trump is being challenged on all fronts and babbling on about “fake news” isn’t helping. This is a way of lashing out.

    This is perfect:
    https://twitter.com/goldengateblond/status/868609251769425924

  • ninjaf

    1. I think (am hoping?) this is one of his trial balloons where he sees what kind of outrage it is going to generate and will watch the cable news to hear what “experts” say about it before he makes the actual announcement.

    2. This gives him a chance to thumb his nose at the NATO members who are mocking him.

    3. Steve Bannon is back on the inner circle since Jared Kushner is in deep trouble.

    • Nefercat

      “2. This gives him a chance to thumb his nose at the NATO members who are mocking him.”
      ———————-
      It’s a shame that he is too stupid to understand the concept of cutting off your nose to spite your face.

      He still hasn’t figured out that the rest of the world will just move on without the US. He thinks they are desperately waiting to hear his decision on the climate change accord. They are not and they will keep right on mocking him. China, France, and Germany will be the world leaders in green energy and they will reap the economic benefits.

      • ninjaf

        And the US will cede any leadership and/or advantage we currently have.

        • Nefercat

          Exactly. So much for Yankee ingenuity or putting a man on the moon before anyone else and on and on and on.

          You know, why haven’t the stupid shmucks opposed to the concept of climate change figured out they don’t have to believe in it to still make a ton of money off of those who do?

          • ninjaf

            You would think there would be some of them who have made that calculation. But apparently they aren’t members of the Republican base.

  • muselet

    This is dismaying, but not unexpected.

    It’s also schmuck bait. As Greg Sargent pointed out this morning, there’s no real reason for the US to withdraw from the Paris Agreement, which sets voluntary commitments to reduce emissions. All Donald Trump would have to do is set new—less-strict—goals and call it a day. Withdrawal is fan service, a way to signal to Trump voters that The Black Guy’s legacy is being erased (isn’t it interesting, as Charlie Pierce mused several times after the election, the ways in which economic anxiety is expressed?).

    Future generations will not judge us kindly.

    –alopecia

    • Aynwrong

      Beat me to it.

  • Georgie

    He just doesn’t care, it’s all about money.

    • You’re right…it’s typical American short-sighted greed.

    • Badgerite

      It’s all about himself.

      • 1933john

        Same-o..same-o

  • A decision that’s bad for people, bad for the environment, bad for agriculture, bad for future energy development, bad for American leadership, and bad for the economy.

    Making America Great Again!

    • Scopedog

      Yep–and a decision that should make all of those jackasses who ran to Stein while hooting about how Hillary would be soooooo much worse hang their fucking heads in shame….but they won’t.

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