WHAT IT IS
- Under the decision by President Trump, the U.S. has withdrawn from the Paris Climate Agreement.
- Member countries of the Paris agreement are pledging to reduce carbon emissions drastically over the next decade in order to curb the effects of global warming.
- A group of U.S leaders and business people lead by former mayor Michael Bloomberg have stepped up to fulfill the commitments in the deal, in place of the U.S. federal government.
WHY IT MATTERS
With the U.S. officially pulling out of the deal, a large chunk of the funding has also left with it. If this group of mayors and others can pull together enough funding and support from the lower levels of the U.S. government, it could mitigate the negative effects of the U.S. not officially being in the agreement.
WHERE WE ARE NOW
- Bloomberg himself has pledged $15 million in funding to the United Nations (UN) to start to cover the U.S.’s former portion.
- Over 200 U.S. mayors and numerous businesses have adopted the Paris Agreement and plan on honoring the commitments outlined in the agreement. Hawaii became the first state to enact state law that aligns with the accord.
- Currently, the UN has no mechanism for allowing non-countries to enter into the Paris Agreement, so it is unclear how the group will formally enter.
THINGS TO THINK ABOUT
- Will only a portion of the U.S. be able to make up for the whole U.S. not being in the agreement?
- Is there anything President Trump could do in order to stop this group from signing onto and pledging to uphold the agreement?
- Is the UN going to formally allow this group to sign onto the agreement?
- Will the U.S. fall from its mantle as the world’s moral leader on an array of issues if this group doesn’t end up hitting the goals pledged to in the agreement?