Saturday, 25 November, 2017

World leaders reaffirm commitment to fighting climate change

Felix Bryan | 04 June, 2017, 07:53

U.S. President Donald Trump announces his decision for the United States to pull out of the Paris climate agreement in the Rose Garden at the White House June 1, 2017 in Washington, DC. Pence insisted the US has already shown "real leadership" and "real progress" by somewhat reducing carbon emissions over the last decade.

At least two Republican governors announced Friday they were partnering with Democratic-run states to combat climate change after Trump's announcement sparked swift condemnation from academics, industry leaders and environmental experts.

If Pence needs a reason, NASA has it: A report entitled, "Climate change: How do we know?", noted that "scientific evidence for warming of the climate system is unequivocal" and that global warming is now happening at a rate "ten times faster than the average rate of ice-age-recovery warming".

Scientists say Earth is likely to reach more unsafe levels of warming sooner if the USA retreats from its pledge because America contributes so much to rising temperatures.

Almost 4,000 miles away, Parisian Raphael Angeli said Trump's decision puts him at odds with many of his fellow citizens and much of the world.

However, his decision to pull the USA from the voluntary agreement isolates the country from most of the rest of the world.

Flatt said he's concerned that the political leadership in the United States doesn't have an understanding of climate change.

And in California, considered the leading state in tackling climate change, the state senate just passed a law to go to 50 per cent renewable electricity by 2026 and 100 per cent by 2045. Trump peddled dozens of wildly disproven falsehoods in justifying exiting the agreement, which prompted swift backlash from the global community, diplomats, Trump's own Secretary of State, Rex Tillerson, and major U.S. companies like Apple, Microsoft and Intel.

Ames said if this had been handled like a treaty and had gone through the Senate, President Trump would not have been able to make the decision to leave the agreement.

"The president may have unwittingly added dynamism to the same actors that have always been the ones that are delivering the reductions to actually do more on their own", he said.

"We deem the momentum generated in Paris in December 2015 irreversible and we firmly believe that the Paris Agreement can not be renegotiated, since it is a vital instrument for our planet, societies and economies", the leaders wrote.

Dan Crawford, director of governmental relations for the North Carolina League of Conservation Voters, said the agreement wasn't legally or financially binding and it was about setting precedent.

The media mogul and former New York City mayor is also coordinating a group of American governors, mayors, universities and businesses that remain committed to fulfilling the United States' obligations under the deal.

The United States under this accord had pledged to cut greenhouse emissions 26 to 28 per cent by 2025 and agreed to pay 3 billion dollar in aid for other poor and developing countries by 2020.

The business mogul met with French President Emmanuel Macron and Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo in Paris on Friday, where he announced his foundation, Bloomberg Philanthropies, would help coordinate a U.S. effort called America's Pledge.

Trump is expected to announce his decision on Thursday afternoon US time (3 p.m. EDT; 1900 GMT).

Ervin said it's apparent after Trump's decision, that climate action will be up to cities.

"The cow is out of the barn", said Allen of the shift to green energy.

Key points in the agreement include peaking greenhouse gas emissions as soon as possible and achieving a balance between sources of energy in the second half of this century. The climate deal, signed by every nation except Nicaragua and Syria, was made an agreement than a treaty to allow the White House to avoid having to seek congressional approval.

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