G19 versus USA on “irreversible” Paris climate agreement

The US remained separated from the G20 on climate change at the summit in Hamburg, Germany.

The Guardian:  Trump left in cold over Paris climate agreement at end of G20 summit

Donald Trump was left isolated at the end of a fractious G20 summit in Hamburg, Germany, after every other world leader signed up to a declaration that the Paris climate agreement was irreversible following an unprecedented standoff.

After the publication of a final communique that saw the emergence of a G19 grouping for the first time, Theresa May said she was “dismayed at the US decision to pull out” of the accord and had personally urged the president to reconsider.

“I did bring the issue of climate change agreement up with President Trump.

“I have had a number of conversations with him while I’ve been here at the G20. What I did was encourage him to bring the United States back into the Paris agreement, and I continue to hope that’s what the United States will do.”

 

More from Politico: G20 leaders — except Donald Trump — declare Paris climate deal ‘irreversible’

Leaders of the G20 richest nations agreed to disagree on climate change, unanimously supporting a final communiqué in which all of them except U.S. President Donald Trump declare the Paris climate agreement to be “irreversible” and needing action “swiftly.”

The text of the final communiqué, seen by POLITICO, does contain face-saving language for Trump though, stating that “[the U.S.] will endeavor to work closely with other countries to help them access and use fossil fuels more cleanly and efficiently.”

The unanimous statement — with a carve-out for Trump — is a diplomatic coup for the summit’s host, German Chancellor Angel Merkel, who had been determined to cement the unity of the G19 in the face of Trump’s intention to pull out of the climate agreement. There had been fears that the U.S. could peel off one or two other countries in a bid to significantly water down the final text on climate change.

According to the text obtained by POLITICO, the G20 leaders will declare:

“We take note of the decision of the United States of America to withdraw from the Paris Agreement. The United States of America announced it will immediately cease the implementation of its current nationally-determined contribution and affirms its strong commitment to an approach that lowers emissions while supporting economic growth and improving energy security needs. The United States of America states it will endeavor to work closely with other countries to help them access and use fossil fuels more cleanly and efficiently and help deploy renewable and other clean energy sources, given the importance of energy access and security in their nationally-determined contributions.

“The Leaders of the other G20 members state that the Paris Agreement is irreversible. We reiterate the importance of fulfilling the UNFCCC [UN Framework Convention on Climate Change] commitment by developed countries in providing means of implementation including financial resources to assist developing countries with respect to both mitigation and adaptation actions in line with Paris outcomes and acknowledge the OECD’s report “Investing in Climate, Investing in Growth”. We reaffirm our strong commitment to the Paris Agreement, moving swiftly towards its full implementation in accordance with the principle of common but differentiated responsibilities and respective capabilities, in the light of different national circumstances and, to this end, we agree to the G20 Hamburg Climate and Energy Action Plan for Growth as set out in the Annex.”

Trump also seems out of step with a majority of Americans and about half of Trump voters.

Yale poll: By more than 5 to 1, voters say the U.S. should participate in the Paris Climate Agreement

The US should participate in the Paris Climate Agreement – registered voters:

  • Yes – 69%
  • No – 13%

Yes by political affiliation:

  • Republicans – 51%
  • Moderate/liberal Republicans – 73%
  • Independents – 61%
  • Democrats – 86%

47% of  Trump’s voters say the U.S. should participate in the Paris agreement, compared with only 28% who say the U.S. should not.

More from the Yale program on Climate Communication: Climate Change in the American Mind: May 2017

  • 58% believe climate change is mostly human caused
  • 30% say it is due mostly to natural changes in the environment
  • 39% think the odds that global warming will cause humans to become extinct are 50% or higher
  • 58% think the odds of human extinction from global warming are less than 50%

Most important reason to reduce global warming:

  • 24% say providing a better life for our children and grandchildren
  • 16% preventing the destruction of most life on the planet
  • 13% protecting God’s creation

 

 

4 Comments

  1. Alan Wilkinson

     /  July 9, 2017

    It’s empty rhetoric until action is weighed against costs. Everyone is in favour of someone else paying for everything.

  2. NOEL

     /  July 9, 2017

    Under the current regime here most of the cost is been born by consumers and not by polluters.
    https://www.auckland.ac.nz/en/about/news-events-and-notices/news/news-2016/07/carbon-tax-could-lower-emissions-and-gst-.html

  3. High Flying Duck

     /  July 10, 2017

    Worth putting here in full:

    Climate Politics and the English Language
    No surprise: the “Final Communiqué” of the (largely irrelevant, purely cosmetic) G20 summit was difficult for the participant countries to agree on. One of the main sticking points? Again, no surprise: climate change. Here’s part of the final language on “Energy and Climate”:

    We take note of the decision of the United States of America to withdraw from the Paris Agreement. The United States of America announced it will immediately cease the implementation of its current nationally-determined contribution and affirms its strong commitment to an approach that lowers emissions while supporting economic growth and improving energy security needs. The United States of America states it will endeavour to work closely with other countries to help them access and use fossil fuels more cleanly and efficiently and help deploy renewable and other clean energy sources, given the importance of energy access and security in their nationally- determined contributions.

    The Leaders of the other G20 members state that the Paris Agreement is irreversible. We reiterate the importance of fulfilling the UNFCCC commitment by developed countries in providing means of implementation including financial resources to assist developing countries with respect to both mitigation and adaptation actions in line with Paris outcomes and note the OECD’s report “Investing in Climate, Investing in Growth”. We reaffirm our strong commitment to the Paris Agreement, moving swiftly towards its full implementation in accordance with the principle of common but differentiated responsibilities and respective capabilities, in the light of different national circumstances and, to this end, we agree to the G20 Hamburg Climate and Energy Action Plan for Growth as set out in the Annex.

    Take note of the stark contrast in the language used in the official statement between the U.S.-authored first paragraph and the “Paris”-focused second. Whatever one’s priors are on how climate change is best addressed, it’s difficult not to immediately recall George Orwell’s seminal essay “Politics and the English Language“—on how bad political writing is (at minimum) a tell for very lazy thinking.

    The first paragraph is written in crystal clear, easy to understand prose. The United States, which in contrast to Europe is actually succeeding in cutting its own emissions, is doing so by bringing comparatively clean natural gas to market through fracking. It is looking to leverage this bonanza to help provide energy security to its allies. And insofar as it does this by providing them with natural gas, it will be helping wean them off of dirty coal as well, thereby further lowering global emissions.

    The second paragraph is difficult to understand—all empty aspirations and limp hectoring swimming in a soup of acronyms and allusions to reports and annexes. Its only clear call to action is for developed countries to contribute money to the so-called Green Climate Fund—an effort that to date has fallen far short of expectations, and that President Trump has (correctly) criticized as an ill-conceived slush fund. Now go back and read the final sentence: “…full implementation in accordance with the principle of common but differentiated responsibilities and respective capabilities, in the light of different national circumstances…” Seriously, you can’t make this stuff up.

    The FT reported that the phrase in the first paragraph, about helping other countries access and use “fossil fuels more cleanly and efficiently”, was particularly contentious. That should tell you all you need to know about how ideological and deranged environmental politics has become.

    https://www.the-american-interest.com/2017/07/08/climate-politics-english-language/

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