Ads

Ads

Emmanuel Macron (L) said the US leadership had turned its back on the world
The jubilation among the delegates was palpable. Politicians, scientists, activists were all ecstatic.They were surprised too. After the total failure of the previous summit, five years earlier in Copenhagen, they had finally achieved what they had thought was impossible: almost every nation had signed the accord.
His promise to "make America great again" had resonated across large swathes of the country largely because he promised to get their jobs and their industry back.
Trump on climate agreement: 'We're getting out'
Mr Trump's pledge to pull out of the Paris accord meant, they believed, that their factories would reopen, their jobs would be returned to them.
It was a cruel populist tactic and it has now been compounded. In an hour long statement on Thursday evening Mr Trump held true to his word.
"In order to fulfil my solemn duty to protect the people of the United States we will withdraw from the climate accord," he announced from the Rose Garden of the White House.
What is the Paris Agreement?
The factory workers are thrilled, naturally. But it's impossible to see how, ultimately, it will make their lives better, let alone reignite their factories.
Far from putting America first, leaders globally now believe that he has put America last.
It will be left behind as other countries accelerate, with unprecedented enthusiasm, their green energy initiatives. That will have an economic impact.
@EmmanuelMacron
We all share the same responsibility: make our planet great again.11:21 PM - 1 Jun 201719,353 38,527Emmanuel Macron@EmmanuelMacron Follow
The flurry of condemnation from around the world was a hint of how big a deal the Trump decision is.
In their joint statement, Italy, France and Germany expressed their regret and said they believed the climate deal gave substantial economic opportunities for propensity and growth.
It's true that the accord unlocked significant low carbon investment and innovation globally creating more and more jobs.
Protesters marched on the White House to try to pressure the President
France's President Emmanuel Macron, in a rare 11pm live televised statement, said: "I want to express myself a few hours after the declaration of the President of the United States of America because this is serious."
"The US has turned its back on the world.
"France will not turn its back on Americans," he said, before inviting American scientists to come and work in France.
He ended with: "Make the planet great again".
Protesters marched on the White House to try to pressure the President
The EU Commissioner for climate action and energy, Miguel Arias Canete, issued a lengthy statement condemning Mr Trump's decision and concluded: "Today's announcement has galvanised us rather than weakened us, and this vacuum will be filled by new broad committed leadership.
"Europe and its strong partners all around the world are ready to lead the way.
"We will work together to face one of the most compelling challenges of our time."
In 2015, the Eiffel Tower beamed the message: 'The Paris accord is done'
John Kerry, the former US secretary of state who was instrumental in ensuring success in Paris in 2015, described the decision as "an ignorant, cynical appeal to an anti-science, special-interest faction far outside the mainstream".
In 2015, the Eiffel Tower beamed the message: 'The Paris accord is done'
He added: "If the world doesn't press forward faster, we'll see stronger storms, longer and more intense droughts, more wildfires, a swell of climate refugees and intensified conflict around the world."
China, once the climate change villain, is now seen in an altogether different light.
While Mr Trump was speaking in the Rose Garden, the Chinese Premier Li Keqiang was dining in Brussels with EU leaders.
John Kerry signed the agreement with his granddaughter in his arms
It is China's enthusiastic commitment, along with India and Japan, to stick to the Paris Accord that will, it is hoped, mitigate the decision by Mr Trump.
John Kerry signed the agreement with his granddaughter in his arms
While there is significant disappointment and dismay at the decision, there is reserved confidence among politicians, scientists and activists that the pledges made in Paris in December 2015 can still be met.
So maybe there are a few silver linings to Mr Trump's toxic cloud.
The world, minus just America, will now have new impetus, willingness and resolve to implement the Paris accord and ensure the fight for the environment can continue.
Already, extra support for developing nations to help them meet their goals has been pledged.
Americans in Japan held a rally near the US embassy in Tokyo in March
New bonds are being formed as old ones fray. The European Union and the world's largest emitter, China, releasing a joint statement on fighting climate change is significant.
Americans in Japan held a rally near the US embassy in Tokyo in March
The European Union sees this as an opportunity to reassert itself globally.
And given that significant portions of the American electorate are against Mr Trump's decision, it seems certain that climate change will now be a key theme in the next US election.
It's not often that climate change features highly in election campaigns.
I fear though that the silver linings won't stretch as far as places like Johnstown, Pennsylvania.
America's rust belt workers will be disappointed.

0 comments:

Post a Comment

Popular Posts

Blog Archive

 
Top