22 Awesome Responses to Trump's Announcement on Paris Agreement
The 2015 accord, signed by nearly 200 countries, commits nations to voluntarily cut greenhouse gas emissions to limit global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius above preindustrial levels to prevent catastrophic climate change.
In anticipation of Trump's withdrawal from the agreement, world leaders reaffirmed their support to reduce global emissions and lead on climate action. Now, the U.S. joins Syria and Nicaragua as the only countries not to back the accord.
Trump's remarks, which he made from the White House Rose Garden, included:
"In order to fulfill my solemn duty to protect America and its citizens, the United States will withdraw from the Paris climate accord but being negotiations to reenter either the Paris accord or an entirely new transaction under terms that are fair to the United States. We're getting out. And we will start to renegotiate and we'll see if there's a better deal. If we can, great. If we can't, that's fine.
"The United States will cease all implementation of the nonbinding Paris accord. As someone who cares deeply about our environment, I cannot in good conscience support a deal which punishes the United States. The Paris accord is very unfair at the highest level to the United States.
"The agreement doesn't eliminate coal jobs, it just transfers those jobs out of the United States and ships them to foreign countries. This agreement is less about the climate and more about other countries gaining a financial advantage over the United States."
Watch Trump's announcement here (starts 37 minutes into the video).
Here are my 21 favorite responses to Trump's announcement. Share your response in the comments.
1. "Removing the United States from the Paris Agreement is a reckless and indefensible action. It undermines America's standing in the world and threatens to damage humanity's ability to solve the climate crisis in time. But make no mistake: if President Trump won't lead, the American people will." — Former Vice President Al Gore
2. "Consider the implications to history if Great Britain turned back from the Industrial Revolution in 1800. President Trump has made the most reckless and irresponsible decision by a U.S. president since the Iraq war. America has lost her moral authority and any claim to being an exemplary nation. With this pen stroke, we have ceded our position as the world's leader to China. The generations will pay for our stupidity." — Robert F. Kennedy, Jr.
3. "With or without Washington, we're working to aggressively fight climate change." — New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo
5. "Donald Trump is showing us the art of breaking a deal. By abandoning the Paris Agreement, this administration will further perpetuate environmental racism and climate injustice against Indigenous peoples experiencing the worst effects of climate change across the globe ... Backing out of this agreement continues a long history of broken promises and threatens the vital and sacred life cycles of Mother Earth." — Indigenous Environmental Network's Executive Director Tom BK Goldtooth
6. "Today, the future livability of our planet was threatened by President Trump's careless decision to withdraw the United States from the Paris Agreement. Our future on this planet is now more at risk than ever before. For Americans and those in the world community looking for strong leadership on climate issues, this action is deeply discouraging. Now, more than ever, we must be determined to solve climate change, and to challenge those leaders who do not believe in scientific facts or empirical truths. It is time for all of us to stand up, organize, fight back, and channel our energy into grassroots political action." — Leonardo DiCaprio
7. "This is a decision only someone in a billionaire's bubble would make ... Trump is an out of touch billionaire selling out America—and the world—for profit." — Greenpeace USA Executive Director Annie Leonard
9. "Trump doesn't speak for the majority of Americans with this decision. And we're going to make sure the world knows that." — Oil Change International
Trump doesn't speak for the majority of Americans with this decision. And we're going to make sure the world knows… https://t.co/3E2nGelvEd— Oil Change International (@Oil Change International)1496344265.0
11. "Trump's extremism has isolated us from the global coalition we helped to create—with China, Germany, India, Japan and 190 other countries—to fight the central environmental challenge of our time." — Natural Resources Defense Council President Rhea Suh
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Climate Week this year coincides with clear skies in Washington state for the first time in almost two weeks.
In just a few days in early September, Washington state saw enough acres burned – more than 600,000 – to reach our second-worst fire season on record. Our worst fire season came only five years ago. Wildfires aren't new to the west, but their scope and danger today is unlike anything firefighters have seen. People up and down the West Coast – young and old, in rural areas and in cities – were choking on smoke for days on end, trapped in their homes.
Fires like these are becoming the norm, not the exception.