Cities and States acting alone can’t meet our Paris Climate Agreement goals

  • Published on October 23rd, 2018

Alex Lenferna at Common Dreams writes—No, the US Is Not Upholding Its Paris Climate Agreement Commitments.

desert by cocoparisienne on Pixabay

By Meteor Blades

At the end of the Global Climate Action Summit, California Governor Jerry Brown and Michael Bloomberg pronounced that despite Trump’s intransigence the U.S. is still “upholding its commitment to the Paris Climate Agreement”. They were celebrating the fact that sub-national commitments put “the country within striking distance of the 26% reduction in greenhouse gases, by 2025, that the United States promised to hit in Paris”.

Firstly, the Paris agreement was not just about countries reducing their domestic emissions. Centrally, it was also about rich, developed, climate polluting countries providing funding to help developing countries adapt to and mitigate climate change. For the United States, as the richest country on earth and the largest historical climate polluter, this political and moral responsibility is particularly pronounced.Unfortunately, though, despite some encouraging climate action at the sub-national level, the U.S. is not “upholding its commitment to the Paris Climate Agreement”, as it is failing to address the issue of international climate finance and is far from meetings its fair share of emissions reductions. Together these failures mean that the United States cannot really be said to be upholding the agreement, but sub-national actors like DC can change that.

When Trump pulled out of the Paris climate agreement, the administration also abandoned the US’s pledge to deliver an additional $2 billion to the Green Climate Fund (GCF) — a key funding channel serving the Paris Climate Agreement which helps developing countries adapt to climate change and pursue low-carbon and climate resilient development. Despite America having previously promised action on this front, it has been all but ignored by the U.S. sub-national climate movement.

To make matters worse, even the U.S. pledge under the Paris Climate Agreement to reduce its emissions 26-28% by 2025 is far from its fair share of emissions reductions. […]

(Crossposted from DailyKos. Desert image by cocoparisienne on Pixabay)

About the Author

Meteor Blades is a writer and contributing editor at DailyKos. He believes there is something profoundly wrong with our system. - the unchecked accumulation of wealth and power into the hands of a very small group of corporate business interests has contributed to the wholesale corruption of our political system. For an understanding about the level of corruption in our country, he encourages you to view these two PBS documentaries: (1). ,The Untouchables; (2) The United States of ALEC.