Exiting the Paris Climate Agreement is an Essential Step in Protecting America

By Kevin Freeman
June 01, 2017Jun 01, 2017
President Donald Trump delivers the Address to Congress on Tuesday, February 28, 2017, at the U.S. Capitol. This is the President's first Address to Congress of his presidency. Official White House Photo by Shealah Craighead

Today, President Trump announced that his Administration is pulling the United States out of the Paris Climate Accord
. This is a big victory for those who want to see our nation better positioned in the global economic war already underway. It is also a promise that Donald Trump made when campaigning and kept early in his Presidency.

There are many points of explanation we could share as to why this was the right decision, but here are a few:

First, the Accord as written would undermine American jobs and competitiveness.

  1. According to a study by NERA Consulting, meeting the Obama Administration's requirements in the Paris Accord would cost the U.S. economy nearly $3 trillion over the next several decades.
  2. By 2040, our economy would lose 6.5 million industrial sector jobs – including 3.1 million manufacturing sector jobs
  3. It would effectively decapitate our coal industry, which now supplies about one-third of our electric power

Second, the deal was negotiated BADLY, and extracts meaningless commitments from the world's top polluters.

  1. The Obama-negotiated Accord imposes unrealistic targets on the U.S. for reducing our carbon emissions, while giving countries like China a free pass for years to come.
  2. Under the Accord, China will actually increase emissions until 2030.

Third, the U.S. is ALREADY a Clean Energy and Oil & Gas Energy Leader; we can reduce our emissions and continue to produce American energy without the Paris Accord.

  1. America has already reduced its carbon-dioxide emissions dramatically. Since 2006, CO2 emissions have declined by 12 percent, and are expected to continue to decline.
  2. According to the Energy Information Administration (EIA), the U.S. is the leader in oil & gas production.

Fourth, the agreement funds a UN Climate Slush Fund underwritten by American taxpayers.

  1. President Obama committed $3 billion to the Green Climate Fund – which is about 30 percent of the initial funding – without authorization from Congress
  2. With $20 trillion in debt, the U.S. taxpayers should not be paying to subsidize other countries' energy needs.

Fifth, the deal also accomplishes LITTLE for the climate.

According to researchers at MIT, if all member nations met their obligations, the impact on the climate would be negligible. The impacts have been estimated to be likely to reduce global temperature rise by less than .2 degrees Celsius in 2100. In reality, American shale development does more for the climate than any agreement ever negotiated.

The bottom line is that staying in the Paris Accord would have placed us at a massive competitive disadvantage. Many global agreements have been designed to transfer wealth from rich countries to poor and this one was no exception. This isn't conjecture. In fact it was admitted in advance by Cass Sunstein (the former administrator of the Obama White House Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs) in a Bloomberg News Article.

We congratulate President Trump on keeping his word and putting America first. This is an essential step.