‘US exiting Paris climate pact poses excuse for others’


The U.S. withdrawal from Paris climate treaty will affect negatively the future of the act as this move gives other countries an “excuse” to act slowly, according to an environmentalist.

“[…] If the biggest economy on earth won’t participate [in the Paris Agreement], it takes the pressure off everyone else and gives them an excuse to go slow,” Bill McKibben, author and the founder of global environmentalist movement 350, told Anadolu Agency on Thursday via an e-mail interview.

He added that the latest U.S. divorce move would becloud the deal and obstruct the fight against climate change.

Responding to the question on the key contribution of the Paris Agreement in decreasing the effects of climate change, McKibben said this accelerates innovation by urging countries around the world move quickly toward renewable energy that will cut the prices.

Touching on the possible worst case scenario that would happen if the agreement was not successful or countries failed to stop climate breakdown, the environmentalist said: “If not hell on earth then at least a similar temperature.”

In June 2017, President Donald Trump announced the U.S. was pulling out of the Paris Agreement, an international pact working towards reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

The U.S. submitted paperwork Monday to the United Nations that begins the one-year process to formally withdraw from the historic Paris climate accord.

If the process is completed, the U.S. would be the first nation to quit the deal. The loss of the world’s superpower and second-largest carbon emitter would likely send shockwaves through the agreement.

On Dec. 12, 2015, parties reached a landmark agreement in Paris to combat climate change and the Paris Agreement entered into force on Nov. 4, 2016.

The Paris climate pact is part of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). It aims to mitigate the effects of climate change by reducing carbon emissions and limiting global temperature rise to below 2 degrees Celsius.

Under the Paris deal, industrialized nations pledged financial support for developing countries for climate protection measures, technology transfer, and capacity-building programs.
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