President Donald Trump has just given his last confirmation of the intention to withdraw from the obligations of the Paris Agreement, the accord within the United Nations Framework Convention on climate change. The announcement was made at an energy conference in Pittsburg. He explained why he is pulling the US out of Paris climate accord by referring to the negative results that it would lead to the american economy.
Moreover, all his main reasons could be resumed with one statement he made: “What we won’t do is punish the American people while enriching foreign polluters“, he said, adding: “I’m proud to say it – it’s called America First.” The process of withdrawing from the accord will probably begin on November 4th, the last deadline for the U.S. to leave.
It was not the first time the president made such an announcement. Indeed, he did it already during the presidential campaign, when he used the retreat from the agreement as a means of gathering votes from those people who would feel left behind by the priorities of actions on climate change, all those ‘American businesses and workers’, who are now protected by the ‘America First policy’ instead.
As a matter of fact, the U.S. priority is to turn the country into an energy superpower. This objective will only be achieved by reducing costs in oil and gas production, that will inevitably lead to the opposite of what is expected from the climate accord.
Indeed, the Paris Agreement is important because it unites the policy and the governance of 195 countries to achieve two main objectives: limiting the increase of the temperatures to 1.5 degrees and reaching climate neutrality with greenhouse gas emissions. In the year 2020, countries should start the concrete action expected by the accord.
If the U.S. chooses not to be involved into the system established by the agreement, it would soon be difficult to compete with two other economic giants like China and Russia, which are planning and rethinking their leadership on this issue. This future scenario will soon exclude America which will not be as strong as it might think.