Paris climate agreement a bad deal for U.S.
As stated previously I’m not a Trump supporter. Yes, many of the highly competent individuals he put into decision-making positions indicated he was inept, ineffectual and lacking in overall planning and knowledge. Collectively can they be wrong? I think not.
Still, Trump was right on some decisions or positions he made or took. The Paris Accord/Agreement is another one and here’s why: It’s just common sense.
Confused about the Paris agreement and why Trump chose to get us out? The following facts and figures were given in 2017 courtesy of the research of Róisín Michele and have only gotten worse.
In December 2015, nine months before the end of his presidency, Barack Obama signed the Paris Accord. In order to ratify it as a treaty two-thirds of the Senate had to approve it. Obama told us it was not a treaty, but an executive agreement between him and other nations. The Paris agreement was an agreement only with the Obama Administration, and an unratified treaty, in which case it had no effect. The Constitution’s separation of powers prevents the President from binding the country unilaterally. Our system does not divide authority into spheres controlled exclusively by the Senate, House and President. It requires combinations of offices to work together.
Obama’s counterparties in Paris knew he lacked the support to bind our country. In fact, they watered down the wording of the agreement to support Obama’s contention that it did not require ratification.
Examples: they changed the word “shall” to “should” in many places in order to avoid calling it a treaty. The negotiators chose between a treaty that would bind the United States and the promise of an outgoing president. Any claims that Trump or the United States “is going back on its word” is disingenuous. Only Obama gave his word and the other parties in Paris helped design the agreement to throw our Constitution out the window.
Obama ignored his constitutional duty to submit treaties to the Senate. In fact, a statement from the Obama White House said it all when the White House signaled it would bypass the Senate no matter what by saying, “I think it’s hard to take seriously from some members of Congress who deny the fact that climate change exists (That statement is true about some congressmen still…) that they should have some opportunity to render judgment about a climate change agreement.”
Under the agreement Obama signed, the U.N. would have called the shots on what we did within our own borders to protect the climate. They would have also had the power to punish us through embargoes and trade agreements.
Under Obama’s agreement, China, and the world’s major polluters, would be ALLOWED to increase their emissions where the United States could not. India is hinging its participation on billions of dollars of foreign aid.
China would be allowed to build hundreds of additional coal plants, but we could not, according to the agreement. India would be allowed to double its coal production by 2020, but we would have to get rid of ours. Even Europe would have been allowed to continue construction of coal plants, but we could not.
Obama’s requirements in the Paris Accord would have cost the United States economy nearly $3 trillion. By 2040 our economy would lose 6.5 million industrial sector jobs, including 31 million manufacturing sector jobs. It would decapitate our coal industry, which now supplies one-third of our electric power.
It imposed unrealistic targets on the United States for reducing our carbon emissions, while giving countries like China a free pass. China would actually be allowed to INCREASE emissions until 2030.
Again let’s hope our President uses common sense in his decisions.
John Krueger, Clarksville