Thoughts On The Paris Climate Agreement

Helen Mountford, vice president for climate and economics at the World Resources Institute, said in a statement to NPR that the United States should “be at the forefront of the global effort to pull out of the climate crisis.” Since then, Trump has struck down dozens of climate-related regulations, including rules on air pollution, emissions, drilling and oil and gas extraction. During his first presidential term and his re-election campaign, he made no secret of his taste for fossil fuels and the industry that supplies them. In a report released last month by the U.S. Department of Energy, oil and gas are touted as “energy security and support for our quality of life,” not to mention the climate risks associated with continued use of carbon-rich fuels. To achieve a more sustainable path, the world`s leading public and private financial institutions must not only invest more in clean new alternatives, but also stop investing in old environmental technologies. In the wake of the COVID 19 crisis, governments are providing unprecedented investments to create economies and jobs. There is strong evidence that these investments should focus on low-carbon, climate-resilient projects. The president`s promise to renegotiate the international climate agreement has always been a smokescreen, the oil industry has a red phone at the Home Office, and will Trump bring food trucks to Old Faithful? Collapse occurs when the inability of major economies to achieve their goals is met by increasing criticism and other countries make minimal commitments or slow down their own goals, leading to a “low-level balance” in which NDPs remain static or progress only gradually. Or countries could start withdrawing their NDCs and presenting less ambitious countries. The Paris Agreement is generally regarded by scientists as a single ratchet that allows only increases in NDCs, but without a mechanism to enforce this standard, it can only apply as long as a large country needs it to violate it. The success of a promise does not necessarily mean climate leadership; NDCs can first be resolved at an unambitious level.