The Paris Accord was an exceptionally vicious attack that Barack Obama launched against the American economy. Trump saved us from economic Armageddon.
Because of all the other stuff in my life, I’m now on my sixth attempt to get this post written. I did use the interstices of this randomly busy day, though, to read more about the Paris Accord, both about Trump’s decision and about the hysterics from the Left, especially the Hollywood crowd. Based on this reading, I’ve managed to draw the following conclusions:
The Agreement as to the US was and is not binding. That’s because, both because of Constitutional and international law, it was and is a Treaty — that means he needed the approval of 2/3 of Congress, which meant he needed the approval of vast swaths of the American people. Obama, knowing he could not rally either the country or Congress around him, proceeded unilaterally. Speaking facetiously, if it is binding, it’s binding only on Obama (so maybe he should stop with the huge carbon footprint houses, the private planes, and the friends’ yachts).
The Agreement imposed no meaningful constraints whatsoever on non-American parties to the treaty. A friend of mine who is a scientist went looking for raw data about the treaty. Looking at that data, he had this to say:
With all the “world-coming-to-an-end” talk following Trump’s withdrawal of the US from the Paris Accord, I thought it would be good to look at the actual commitments by countries. It was not easy to find, but here it is. The commitments are voluntary, with each country setting its own goals.
A few nuggets are China’s commitment to PEAK its Carbon emissions by 2030, and USA’s commitment to REDUCE its own emissions by 26-28% by 2025(!). The US has peaked around 2000 according to its own submission to the UN, basically handicapping itself relative to China by 30(!) years.
The EU submission is filed under Latvia here. It is seemingly the most ambitious of the bunch (that I reviewed) setting a 40% reduction relative to 1990 levels. However, the EU’s own stats show that in 2014 the EU was already at 22% down from 1990. For the EU to go down to 26% from 2005 levels would mean 20% reduction, more than the US 25%.
In other words, Obama obligated American to make economically deleterious changes, while everyone else gets to go full speed ahead — with each country picking a baseline of its own choosing for the starting point. (Obama, incidentally, also picked a baseline, one that’s very damaging to the US economy. You can just feel the love….)
The Accord does nothing to place a meaningful limit on CO2 emissions. According to the Left, the treaty under optimal circumstances would have resulted in an 0.2% reduction in emissions. That’s a rounding error, not a reduction. Meanwhile, it would have imposed a 6% reduction in the American economy over 20 years. That’s not a rounding error, that’s a disaster.
In other words, what Obama did — unilaterally, without approval from Americans or Congress — was to sign us up for a plan that destroys our economy, while imposing no obligations whatsoever on everyone else. Trump was, as I already said, absolutely right to walk away from it.
Ignore all the screaming. It’s just noise, and stupid noise at that.
The one thing I do recommend is writing a letter to the White House letting the president know that you agree with him. Because of the media shrieks and howls, positive voices will get drowned out. Trump needs to know that those in the trenches, not in elite enclaves, are grateful for his principled stand.