The United States has formally begun the process of pulling out of the Paris climate agreement, which backs a promise that President Donald Trump made in 2017 when he first announced his intention to withdraw from the climate change initiative.
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced the move in a statement on Nov. 4, calling the accord unreasonable.
“President Trump made the decision to withdraw from the Paris Agreement because of the unfair economic burden imposed on American workers, businesses, and taxpayers by U.S. pledges made under the Agreement,” Pompeo said. “The United States has reduced all types of emissions, even as we grow our economy and ensure our citizens’ access to affordable energy.”
The secretary said the United States formally notified the United Nations on Nov. 4 about its plans.
Pompeo said the “U.S. approach incorporates the reality of the global energy mix,” adding that “innovation and open markets” will drive reductions on emissions.
“Just as we have in the past, the United States will continue to research, innovate, and grow our economy while reducing emissions and extending a helping hand to our friends and partners around the globe,” he said.
The move drew criticism from some Democrats on Nov. 4, including Sen. Tom Carper (D-Del.), who is the top Democrat on the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee.
The withdrawal process takes a year to officially complete. Under the terms of the deal, no country can withdraw in the first three years, with the move beginning with a letter to the United Nations.
The Paris agreement, in which nearly 200 countries set their own national targets for reducing or controlling pollution, went into effect on Nov. 4, 2016. The United States formally entered the agreement under the Obama administration.
The White House didn’t respond to a request for comment about the administration’s upcoming plans, but a State Department spokesperson told The Epoch Times in a Nov. 4 email, “The U.S. position with respect to the Paris Agreement has not changed. The United States intends to withdraw from the Paris Agreement.”
In his 2017 announcement, Trump said the climate accord was an example of Washington entering into an agreement that exclusively benefits other countries and disadvantages the United States, by leaving U.S. workers and taxpayers to “absorb the cost in terms of lost jobs, lower wages, shuttered factories, and vastly diminished economic production.”
Trump also said the United States would begin negotiations to re-enter either the Paris Accord or an entirely new transaction on terms that “are fair to the United States, its businesses, its workers, its people, its taxpayers.”
Myron Ebell, director at the Center for Energy and Environment at the Competitive Enterprise Institute, a nonprofit libertarian think-tank, told The Epoch Times that pulling the United States out of the deal was necessary.
“Getting out of Paris is the most important deregulatory action taken by the Trump administration in terms of maintaining our sovereignty and of freeing our economy from a never-ending stream of energy-rationing policies,” Ebell said via email.
Ebell noted most of the other countries in the deal wouldn’t be able to meet their commitments and also singled out China, the world’s largest polluter.
“China candidly admitted in their commitment that Chinese emissions will continue to increase until 2030,” he wrote. “On the other hand, if the U.S. had stayed in Paris, the commitment undertaken by President [Barack] Obama in 2015 would be enforceable in federal courts.”
The withdrawal of the United States has support from Republican lawmakers. Rep. Jodey Arrington (R-Texas) on Nov. 4 announced the introduction of H.Res. 676, legislation that encourages the United States to withdraw from the Paris deal. A number of other Republicans were also original co-sponsors to the resolution.
“At a time when American innovation is leading the way in environmental stewardship, the Paris Agreement is political window dressing, at best,” Arrington said in a statement. “This feel-good measure would have no meaningful impact on international air quality but, instead, would levy a huge tax on middle and working class families, costing Americans $250 billion and 2.7 million jobs.”
The Paris climate deal is a “massive redistribution of United States wealth to other countries” Trump said in his 2017 speech. He said if there was 1 percent growth, renewable energy sources of energy could be able to meet some of the United States’ domestic demand. But he said at 3 or 4 percent growth, which he said he expected was needed, the country would be at “grave risk of brownouts and blackouts, our businesses will come to a halt in many cases.”
The vast majority of the climate models the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) uses as the basis for its predictions have incorrectly forecast higher temperatures repeatedly. According to an analysis by the Cato Institute, 105 of the 108 models predicted higher surface temperatures for the period between 1998 and 2014 than were actually recorded.
The IPCC has previously admitted that climate models can’t be used to accurately predict long-term changes in the climate.
“In sum, a strategy must recognise what is possible. In climate research and modeling, we should recognise that we are dealing with a coupled non-linear chaotic system, and therefore that the long-term prediction of future climate states is not possible,” the IPCC’s 2018 report stated.