Paris Climate Change Withdrawal


Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images

Stephanie Lazo

The United States was one of 197 countries that took part in the Paris Climate Agreement. On November 4, 2019, President Donald Trump began the process of removing the United States from the agreement. This raised concerns from several students across the county. 

According to Regeneration International, a project of the Organic Consumers Association (OCA), countries that sign the Paris Climate Agreement, “commit to reduce greenhouse gas emissions enough to limit average global warming to 2 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial temperatures.” 

Greenhouse gasses trap the sun’s heat energy in Earth’s atmosphere and cause the Greenhouse Effect; a process in which the planet’s atmosphere warms the planet’s surface to an unsafe temperature. It is the cause for natural disasters such as droughts, floods, and extreme storms.  

Earth Rights International states, “burning fossil fuels, such as coal and gas, account for most of the world’s global warming pollution.” The United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) states that the United States is the second largest carbon dioxide emitters. 

 Former President Barack Obama signed the Paris Climate agreement in 2015, during his presidency. He pledged to cut greenhouse gas emissions between 26 percent and 28 percent from what it was in 2005. 

In 2017, President Donald Trump planned on removing the United States from the agreement. Trump wanted to negotiate a better agreement for the United States and stopped making efforts to meet the pledge made by Obama. In a statement to the White House press secretary, the president reassured, “America remains committed to the trans-Atlantic alliance and to robust efforts to protect the environment.”  

“America remains committed to the trans-Atlantic alliance and to robust efforts to protect the environment.”  ”

— President Donald Trump

Trumps’ decision to withdraw from the agreement received heavy criticism from people of all ages; especially young high school and college students. Since 2017, several climate change protests commenced in major cities throughout the country in efforts to change the President’s mind. Many students even go to the extent of missing school to attend protests.  

Climate Change is a huge topic of discussion for candidates running in the 2020 presidential elections. If Trump is reelected, the current withdrawal process will be completed the day after the 2020 presidential candidate election.  

A great deal of people are concerned about other countries being influenced by the United States’ actions. Other countries may want to withdraw from the Paris Climate agreement after witnessing the United States’ doing it.