Congressmen Alan Lowenthal (CA-47) and Don Beyer (VA-08), co-chairs of the Congressional Safe Climate Caucus, are calling on the Trump Administration to remain in the 2015 Paris Agreement on climate change.
In a letter to President Trump, the Members wrote, “As members of the Safe Climate Caucus, we write to express the importance of the United States maintaining its commitment to the international community by staying in the Paris Agreement under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC).”
The Obama Administration signed on to the agreement in 2016, but President Trump indicated in 2017 that he intended to pull the U.S. out of the framework. The earliest that the United States can officially initiate the yearlong withdrawal process from the Paris Agreement will be today, November 4, 2019.
The Paris Agreement, eventually signed by 197 nations, including the U.S., sets a framework for curbing greenhouse gas emissions and ensuring global temperatures do not exceed 2 degrees Celsius of pre-industrial eras.
“In abandoning this international agreement,” the Members wrote in their letter to the president, “the United States resigns its role as a global leader in the fight against climate change and risks failing to meet the recommendations outlined in the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Special Report. The United States will become the sole major carbon polluter not a party to this agreement, abdicating our responsibility and compromising the United States’ ability to negotiate future international agreements.”
The letter details many of the potential impacts of a U.S. withdrawal, concluding: “The United States must preserve its commitments at home and abroad. Weakening the U.S. presence in the fight against climate change imperils our standing on the world stage and undermines the value of U.S. commitment to international issues and solutions. We urge you to protect the future of the American public, American businesses, and American security by upholding the U.S. commitment to the Paris Agreement under the UNFCCC.”