To no one’s surprise, President Cheeto Jesus announced yesterday that the United States would no long abide by The Paris Agreement, in which 150 or so nations agreed to take steps to limit harm climate change is doing to the world. “I was elected by the citizens of Pittsburgh, not Paris,” Trump said nonsensically, according to this CNN report, as though the City of Light was somehow running the world. “We want fair treatment. We don’t want other countries and other leaders to laugh at us anymore.”
Look, Trump did this because he’s an arrogant buffoon who only likes things that (1) personally benefit him and (2) inflict pain on everyone who isn’t him. The Paris Agreement did nothing for his bottom line, but killing it would definitely enrage most of the world, so his course was clear.
I’m not going to get into the mounting empirical evidence that climate change is already causing damage, both here in Hawaii and around the world. Those who somehow don’t already accept it but are naturally rational curious can use the Google themselves, and it’s useless to argue with those who agree with Trump because they live in a world where everything they don’t understand is “fake.”
That being said, a lot of officials in Hawaii were pissed at Trump. Here’s what they said:
President Trump’s decision to withdraw the United States from the Paris Climate Agreement is irresponsible, hasty, and short-sighted. In Hawaii we understand why it’s important to take care of our land, ocean, and air–our way of life depends on it. Today, it’s more important than ever for states like Hawaii to boldly take the lead on clean energy innovation and good stewardship of our aina.
We are appalled and disappointed, but we are not deterred. Entering a formal withdrawal would take nearly four years to complete which means climate change is on the ballot for every election until we reverse this immoral action.
The future is with clean energy. The future is with innovation. The future is with climate action. We are not going to allow this short-sighted decision to damage our prospects as a country and as a planet. With private sector momentum behind clean energy, states, cities, and regions are taking action. With international cooperation, we will win this fight, without President Trump’s participation.
President Trump’s decision today to withdraw from the Paris Agreement, making us just one of three countries in the world not to participate, is short-sighted and irresponsible. Without global action to drastically curb carbon pollution, climate change threatens the safety and security of the planet, especially in places like Hawaii where we are already experiencing its’ devastating effects. The 2015 hurricane season set a record of 15 tropical storms in Hawaii, acidification of our oceans has killed marine ecosystems and fisheries, bleached coral reefs, while causing damage to local economies. As recently as April of this year, the Honolulu Harbor tide gauge peaked at more than nine inches above predicted tides–the highest daily mean water level ever recorded over 112-years.
The United States should be leading by example, leveraging innovation through science and technology, investing in clean energy, creating renewable energy jobs that cannot be outsourced, growing the economy, enhancing U.S. energy independence, and lowering energy costs for families and businesses, while reducing carbon emissions. We must continue to persevere and do our part to support efforts in the private sector and at all levels of government to combat climate change and protect our environment.
Many non-governmental organizations also released statements that were harshly critical of Trump. Here are a couple examples:
Blue Planet Foundation Executive Director Jeff Mikulina:
Trump’s irresponsible action today imperils our best chance to limit the existential threat of climate change. Trump’s decision is fundamentally at odds with climate science, at odds with global leadership, and at odds with a healthy planet that supports civilization as we know it. With Trump’s action today, Hawaii’s leaders now shoulder the increased responsibility to adopt aggressive clean energy solutions. We can no longer count on this country’s leadership to provide the solutions that Hawaii requires.
League of Women Voters President Chris Carson:
Withdrawing from the Paris Climate Agreement is a giant step in the wrong direction for the health of the planet and all living beings. President Trump’s decision today will undermine global cooperation and have a harmful impact on U.S. relations with our most trusted world allies. The long-term effects of this decision will make more people sick, especially children and the elderly. The League of Women Voters is gravely disappointed to see the United States on the wrong side of history in the fight to protect our planet.
Photo: Senor Codo/Flickr