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Climate Change

EPA Chief Wants Out of Paris Climate Agreement

Written by Philip Hodges

So far 192 countries have signed on to the Paris Climate Agreement. Of those, 143 have ratified it. The U.S. signed the agreement in April of 2016 and ratified it in September of the same year. The agreement went into force in November.

Getting out of this deal would be a huge matter. I actually don’t think it’s going to happen. Nearly everyone else in the world have already signed it. The United States pulling out may anger some of our allies, according to Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and even Trump’s daughter Ivanka. They’re probably right.

It seems the administration is not quite in agreement with what needs to be done. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) head Scott Pruitt said that he thinks the U.S. needs to get out of it. Breitbart reported:

The head of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Scott Pruitt, has called for America to “exit” the Paris Climate Agreement signed by Barack Obama last [year].

In an interview with FOX and Friends, Pruitt said that “Paris [agreement] is something that we need to really look at closely. It’s something we need to exit in my opinion.”

 “It’s a bad deal for America,” he continued. “It was an America second, third, or fourth kind of approach. China and India had no obligations under the agreement until 2030. We front-loaded all of our costs.”

Pruitt’s comments increase the likelihood the U.S. will pull out of the agreement, which requires governments to present national plans to reduce emissions to limit global temperature rise, as well as regularly report on their progress. Pruitt has previously referred to the agreement as a “bad deal,” but has never openly called for America to quit.

During his presidential campaign, Donald Trump was a prominent critic of the deal, promising to “cancel” it, and this week he refused to sign a statement endorsing the agreement. Although Trump could not instantly pull America out, he could initiate the process for the country’s exit.

Since taking office, Trump has revoked a range of environmental legislation—including Barack Obama’s climate orders—with a plan to focus on energy independence and revitalize the coal industry. In his first White House budget, Trump also proposed a 31 percent cut to the EPA’s overall budget.

However, reports in March suggested that members of Trump’s senior team were divided over pulling out of the deal, with Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and his own daughter Ivanka advising him not to pull the plug over concerns it would upset major allies.

On Thursday, Energy Secretary Rick Perry confirmed that his department is conducting a review of all energy policy, adding that it was “the right to do.”

The Paris Climate Agreement is a international pact in which nations who have signed and ratified it agree to lessen their respective carbon emissions for the purpose of averting a global warming disaster.

The United States – who along with China are the largest carbon-emitting countries in the world – ratified the agreement last year in September.

The global agreement has little to do with stopping a climate apocalypse, and mostly to do with the world’s nations divesting themselves of fossil fuels and getting all of them to invest in green energy. Having the world dump their financial resources into the green industry would make some politicians and celebrities very rich. It would also make a lot of citizens around the world – including the U.S. – very poor.

But that’s a sacrifice our political elite are willing to make to make life better for themselves.

The views expressed in this opinion article are solely those of their author and are not necessarily either shared or endorsed by EagleRising.com


About the author

Philip Hodges

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