If it weren’t already obvious from his “America First” campaign slogan, or his recent performance on the world stage, Donald J. Trump has finally cemented the deal … the U.S. can no longer claim the mantle of leader of the free world.
Today, unbowed by science, some members of his own party, our European allies … and even the Pope, the United States officially withdrew from the Paris Agreement on climate change.
To Trump, it was a bad deal. He says he wants to “renegotiate” a better agreement for the U.S.
“If we can get a deal, that’s great. If not, that’s fine,” said Trump.
Of course our allies, France, Germany and Italy put out a statement reminding our master negotiator the Paris deal is “not renegotiable”.
With the United States pulling out of the international climate deal spearheaded by the Obama administration in 2015, we now join Nicaragua and Syria as the only countries in the world not participating in the accord. Oh, and by the way, Nicaragua had a good reason for not signing up … it was pushing for a more stringent agreement! And Syria? Well, it is in the middle of a civil war.
There was a time the world looked to the United States for leadership on climate change and almost everything else (strangely enough, that seems only a few days ago!) With Trump as our nation’s chief executive, that well-earned reputation is now a moot point.
By going rogue, it is possible the United States has done more harm to itself than to the climate.
China, no doubt, will now be the undisputed world leader in clean energy.
As much as Trump “digs” coal, sorry people of West Virginia, those mines are not reopening anytime soon.
Of course, the United States withdrawing from the accord does not, in and of itself, kill the deal completely. China, Canada, and the European Union have signaled they intend to move forward with the agreement even without the United States, but the U.S. exit just might encourage other, less-willing participants, like Russia, to follow the U.S. lead or significantly downgrade their commitments.
For those who traffic in Trump/Russia conspiracy theories, now that is something to think about! This seemingly irrational move may just make sense when viewed through the eyes of Putin.
Photo | montecarlotimes.com