According to several insider reports, President Donald Trump will make good on one of his signature campaign pledges this week and pull the United States out of the Paris Climate Agreement. After a certain amount of hemming and hawing from some of his chief administration officials, many of whom claimed that Trump’s position on climate change was a work in progress, Axios reported that those close to the president have said he’s already made up his mind.
The announcement could come by the end of the week, and it will be seen as a resounding victory for Republicans who have encouraged Trump to get us out of the “treaty” as quickly as possible. 21 Republican Senators, including Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, sent a letter to President Trump last month urging him to undo his predecessor’s so-called executive agreement.
“We applaud you for your ongoing efforts to reduce overregulation in America,” they wrote. “To continue on this path, we urge you to make a clean exit from the Paris agreement so that your administration can follow through on its commitment to rescind the Clean Power Plan.”
The move will also trigger predictable backlash from Democrats as well as the other countries that have signed onto the agreement. Trump was reportedly besieged by the leaders of Germany, France, and others last week at the G-7 Summit. They know, of course, that the pact will fall apart if the U.S. is no longer pouring billions of dollars into industrializing countries to help them go green. That is, after all, the only point to the agreement in the first place. Well, it also lets countries like China pretend they are leaders in the environmental movement, but that’s secondary.
This week, UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres warned the U.S. (without specifically naming names) that pulling away from the global climate change efforts would be disastrous.
“Climate change is undeniable,” Guterres said Tuesday. “Climate action is unstoppable. And climate solutions provide opportunities that are unmatchable. The sustainability train has left the station. Get on board or get left behind.”
Guterres said that environmental efforts were not the job killers they were portrayed to be.
“Some may seek to portray the response to climate change as a fundamental threat to the economy,” he said. “Yet what we are witnessing in these early years of a systemic response is the opposite. The real danger is not the threat to one’s economy that comes from acting. It is, instead, the risk to one’s economy by failing to act.”
If there are economic benefits to “going green,” we will see them with or without the federal government’s interference. Let the free market take its course, and businesses will go where the money is. If it lies in sustainable energy, that’s what we’ll see. If it lies in fossil fuels, then Guterres is either ignorant or lying.
Either way, it shouldn’t be up to Washington to ban certain forms of energy production or to pick the winners and losers in the free market. And it certainly shouldn’t be up to the U.S. to pay for China and India to move off of coal. The Paris Agreement never made any sense – even from an environmentalist standpoint. It simply exists as a tool for the left to use in their ongoing war against private industry. Time to throw it in the garbage with the rest of Obama’s misbegotten legacy.