Friday, June 2, 2017
Trump Has Important Reasons Not To Go With Paris Accord
EXCELLENT TRUMP: 5 Reasons Trump Is Right To Pull Out Of The Paris Accord
On Thursday, President Trump made the first major move of his administration
since the appointment of Judge Gorsuch to the Supreme Court: he withdrew
from the Paris Accord, a non-treaty entered into by President Obama that
committed the United States to serious economic deprivation in order to
accomplish nearly nothing in terms of climate change. It’s true that Trump laid
all that out in a well-written, fact-laden speech. The Left predictably went nuts —
they’ve been lighting up buildings green (wasting energy) and quitting his
economic council (who cares) and tweeting incessantly about the end of the
world all day.
But Trump is right.
Here are five reasons why.
1. The Accord Was A Treaty, And President Obama Refused To Treat It Like One. President Obama joined the Paris Accord shortly before leaving office, but
never sent the agreement to the Senate for ratification. There was good reason
for that: it wouldn’t have been ratified. Instead, Obama simply assumed that
America would now be bound by requirements to tamp down carbon emissions
in serious ways. In his statement ripping Trump for pulling out of the agreement,
for example, Obama stated, “the world came together in Paris around the first-
ever global agreement to set the world on a low-carbon course and protect the
world we leave to our children.” But none of that was true. Which meant that the
accord was essentially symbolic, but would create a bevy of headlines about
America abandoning global leadership every time we didn’t meet an arbitrary
line not approved by the American people.
2. There Were Legal Implementation Problems With The Paris Accord.
Donald McGahn, the White House counsel, spelled out that courts could
theoretically use the Paris Accord to strike down Trump’s attempted rollback
of carbon emissions regulations from the Environmental Protection Agency.
The Left claimed that this was empty talk — no enabling legislation regarding
the Paris Accord had been signed, so it was symbolic. But these are the same
people who now say the world will burn up because we’ve pulled out of the
accord, and the same people who think the courts should ignore law in
order to strike down executive orders they don’t like.
3. It Would Have Had No Impact. Obama himself says, “The private sector
already chose a low-carbon future.” So if that was true, what’s the need for
governmental cram-downs, exactly? Beyond that, Trump is correct that MIT
has estimated that even if the Paris Accord were implemented with current
commitments by the various countries, the global climate would be lowered
by a grand total of 0.2 degrees Celsius by the year 2100. Meanwhile, we’d
put crippling regulations on our economy. MIT and the Left insist that other
steps would follow the Paris Accord — but there’s no evidence of that.
4. It Let Other Countries Free-Ride. Obama said in his petulant statement, “It
was bold American ambition that encouraged dozens of other nations to set
their sights higher as well.” This is absolute nonsense. One of the reasons to
be skeptical of the Paris Accord is that it asked nations for non-binding
commitments on climate change. Non-binding. As Oren Cass pointed
out at Commentary:
China committed to begin reducing emissions by 2030, roughly when its economic development would have caused this to happen regardless. India made no emissions commitment, pledging only to make progress on efficiency—at half the rate it had progressed in recent years. Pakistan outdid the rest, submitting a single page that offered to “reduce its emissions after reaching peak levels to the extent possible.” This is a definition of the word “peak,” not a commitment. ... An April report by Transport Environmentfound only three European countries pursuing policies in line with their Paris commitments and one of those, Germany, has now seen two straight years of emissions increases. The Philippines has outright renounced its commitment. A study published by the American Geophysical Union warns that India’s planned coal-plant construction is incompatible with its own targets. All this behavior is socially acceptable amongst the climate crowd. Only Trump’s presumption that the agreement means something, and that countries should be forthright about their commitments, is beyond the pale.
5. It Put America Last. Obama and the Left have claimed for years that “green
jobs” will be produced by government. There is no evidence of that happening.
It’s a chimera. Van Jones, Obama’s “green jobs czar,” couldn’t point to any job
creation for which he was responsible. We do know that additional regulations
would cripple key industries in the United States without making up for them with
these magical new “investments.” The private sector, as Obama recognizes, is
already moving toward more efficient energy solutions. But this agreement wasn’t
about forwarding that. It was about creating public pressure for the US government
to intervene in its own economy, without requiring anything of those with whom
Good for Trump. The Paris Accord was a meaningless sham, designed mainly
to shame the United States into harming its own economy for the vicarious
pleasure of others.