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With US Under Trump a 'Climate Pariah,' 200 Nations Vow to Uphold Paris Agreement


#1

With US Under Trump a 'Climate Pariah,' 200 Nations Vow to Uphold Paris Agreement

Lauren McCauley, staff writer

Underscoring the "climate pariah" that the United States is expected become under a President-elect Donald Trump, world leaders concluded the United Nations climate talks on Friday by re-committing to the goals of the Paris accord and vowing to take swift action to reduce global emissions.


#2

Quote: Underscoring the "climate pariah" that the United States is expected to become UNQUOTE
We have traditionally been the world's #1 climate pariah. Our stance against imposing hydrocarbon reduction has only mitigated in the last couple of years. So what is new with the planet's #1 polluter?


#3

Because the world is doing so much to fight climate change now. /s


#4

What's new is Trump is a climate denier who says climate change " is a hoax". Exactly what the fossil fuel industry loves to hear.


#5

At times now, when I go on my computer to read an article... then get in on discussion, I open up the "pages" and ... well, I feel like one article after another, is ssssooo extremely extreme in it's news ... I am overwhelmed and do not know what to say, do not know which one to respond to first... I am bowled over by the events of the last weeks and can only try to compose myself...I have been listening and trying to get comprehend the strange and dangerous turn this country has taken. I am still digesting it all. I am sick.


#6

Yeah, I get your point... the thing about this is... he will just bring it all on even faster... like instead of us being in hospice, waiting for the final day and end... He will help us just go ahead and commit suicide.


#7

Yes, it's unfortunate we're not celebrating a Bernie Sanders presidency. Because it would have helped address the crisis.
However, if you're looking to a President to do it, it "will never happen" to quote Hillary. Presidents are run by the fossil fuel interests. It has ALWAYS been up to the people to make change happen. Look at the people on the ground (and in the streets all over the world) fighting the Dakota Access Pipeline. So in a weird way, having Trump as President has the potential to galvanize support more quickly and in greater numbers than someone like Clinton ever could have. People would have been OK with her, like Obama. Who did nothing at the climate talks for the 8 years he's been wasting.
So....don't despair. Join the fight. Make your voice heard!


#8

The USA under Dump & Russia under Czar Putin now share a shameful thing in common: state sponsored climate change denial.


#9

Hi Shantiananda,
this article on "Energy & Capital" may give you some peace of mind:


#10

Trump too late to change anything? Lets hope so! Thanks.


#11

Finally!

We will be OK if the 196 nations signing the pledge keep focused on what the International Energy Agency is saying: that we must meet a ZERO CARBON goal by 2040. That is approximately equivalent to what IEA said in November 2011: that if the nations failed to make major changes in energy policy within five years (that's November 2016!) we would have exhausted all true "budgets" for carbon emissions, given our having economically "locked ourselves in" to the emissions that would cause us to reach 450ppm of atmospheric CO2 equivalent. The date that will occur has recently been estimated at 19 or 17 years, essentially equivalent to IEA's zero-carbon-by-2040 (24 years) report.

So the numbers more or less agree. Let zero carbon by 2040 (or sooner!) be the universal goal, let no one forget it, and let no numbers games or falsified progress be allowed to forestall it. The missing link to make it possible is economical energy storage, and the technology is rapidly converging on that goal .. The sooner it is reached, the safer we are. A global "Manhattan Project" to accomplish that is called for, which can be done with or without the United States.

The hobgoblin of GDP maintenance has been the main obstacle in the United States (and in fact in the IEA) to real climate policy, a hobgoblin with which all too many governmental agencies and NGOs have consented. . Now that the true economic consequences are available for all to see, that obstacle becomes meaningless, which business is beginning to see and therefore the GOP and Trump will see.

So, as the banner says, "WE WILL MOVE AHEAD!." With any luck we shall.

Any reader who wishes to have more information on all of this is encouraged to read Lauren's article, “The New, new Climate Math: 17 Years to Get Off Fossil Fuels, or Else,” www.commondreams.org/news/2016/09/22/new-new-climate-math-17-years-get-fossil-fuels-or-else, or this writer's, "The Next US President Can Save The Earth From Catastrophic Global Warming, But May Have Only 2017 To Do It" https://www.countercurrents.org/2016/09/26/the-next-us-president-can-save-the-earth-from-catastrophic-global-warming-but-may-have-only-2017-to-do-it,


#13

"Look at the people on the ground (and in the streets all over the world) fighting the Dakota Access Pipeline."
Yep, that's exactly what I'm doing... I have stood out on Tues afternoon, for the last two Tues... all by myself... in the courtyard in the town next to me.. (cause my town is just about a hamlet).... with my "I support Standing Rock Sioux" signs... and more... I should have some company this Tues... I'm not waiting for any president..............................


#14

You know, changing our energy source, is okay, I guess... BUT... as I have been stating for a good while now.... if we ONLY DO THAT... and DO NOT make some sacrifices of some of the activities and products that we do and have... it really will not make a difference..... we are not just addicted to fossil fuels... we are addicted to ELECTRICITY...


#15

There is nothing wrong with using electricity, as long as it produced in a sustainable manner by an environmentally friendly method..

There are about a dozen promising research projects into nuclear fusion ongoing as we write this. I trust, that one or two of them will succeed in a few years that will give us the tools for unlimited environmentally benign energy, all of it based on electricity.


#16

Exactly. Twenty years ago and more, in Australia (hardly a paragon of virtue) climate change/global warming was acted on and understood, while the USA, whose "education systems" leave much to be desired, always held back. In 2009 Obama destroyed the hopes many had in Copenhagen, in 2015 in Paris he insisted the agreements be voluntary (ie useless). Now Trump wants to expand defunct coalmines, fracking etc,just continuing what has already started.


#17

Actually, I have been there on an extended visit for work and found them to have virtues surpassing here. Consumer protections of astounding strength, $15 min wage, environmental awareness and no assault rifles or handguns. Plus better beer brewers, and more. We could do far better following their example.


#18

The problem with using electricity is that our demand for it exceeds the planet's ability to produce it in a sustainable manner by an environmentally friendly method. Use of electricity <= that limit is 'fine'; use beyond that is not acceptable.

That won't happen. Environmentalists are opposed to that sort of technology, and opposed to the sort of capital that has to be invested to build such a power plant. In the same way they oppose current nuclear power plants. Anything involving nuclear reactions produces radioactive waste. - Years ago I saw an PBS 'Nova' show on the subject, and one telling piece of it was the report that utility executives laughed when someone spoke of fusion power. They have suffered grief for building existing nuclear power plants, and won't touch the even more radioactive [pun known] subject of fusion power.


#19

Thanks Don. Also a much fairer electoral system-what the US calls ranked voting means that people are NOT blamed (like the disgraceful Ethan Coen NYT op-ed) for voting Green- if the smaller Parties get too few votes you get your second choice.


#20

I forgot to mention one important thing: the world is finally focused on a zero-carbon future, but albedo warming (warming resulting from snow and ice melt) is getting out of control, and a reasonable guess is that it will add another 2-3 degrees Celsius to the total. Scientists need to focus on this to get an accurate idea of what is happening. It means in any event that we must seek zero carfbon at the earliest possible date so that the combination doesn't kill us all. See the latest news from the Arctic, "'Climate Emergency': North Pole Sees Record Temps, Melting Ice Despite Arctic Winter" http://www.commondreams.org/news/2016/11/18/climate-emergency-north-pole-sees-record-temps-melting-ice-despite-arctic-winter and Global Warming Accelerates, https://consortiumnews.com/2016/05/18/global-warming-accelerates// "Two Degrees Was Too Much - Global Warming Is Out Of Control." www.countercurrents.org/arguimbau050516.htm

Nicholas C. Arguimbau


#21

To bodeswell:

Agreed - 100%

It's why I would have voted for Jill Stein and the only "progressive' nation-wide platform this past election - and it's why I prefer that between Clinton & Trump - Trump is the better choice, i.e., as you say - it just may lead to grassroots wake up and action.

But I wonder - am I being naive - yet again?

99% did not vote for a progressive platform - that is the real 99% - not the less than billionaire class, who obviously, and I mean that, would sacrifice several digits to be rich - wannabe's all, or let's say 99 %.

No sir - as a pilot I was taught that you are responsible period - for everything.

But as Edward Gibbon pointed out in the single most revealing treatise on human nature, "The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire":

"The power of instruction is seldom of much efficacy except in those happy dispositions where it is almost superfluous."

In other words - you can't really teach or instruct unless the student is already there.

Most people are wrong most of the time - yet democracy is supposedly what we want.

How to think about this?

Well - Alexis de Touqueville said in his treatise "Democracy in America", that:

"In a democracy, the people get the government they deserve"

How to think about this - if it is true?

Half don't even bother to vote (53.7% 2016 election - no significant difference all the way back to JFK).

It is unclear whether they are destroyed as citizens - or smarter than those who vote, knowing the fix is in - probably a combination of the two.

Nevertheless - I thing we conflate the people's need for democracy with the people's need to be as free as possible.

The Declaration of Independence saw this clearly.

Ergo - what now?

Suck it up - for better or for worse - democracy is better than all alternatives.

Thus accept whatever portion of the blame you can handle - and get on with it.

Get on with what?

With living in such a way as will make a future possible.

If you don't know what that requires - there's no time like a crisis to learn at light speed.

The websites are all still available - so far - take advantage of them while you can.

If you can, read - if you can't - listen to those who can and do.

Some type of Green Party - or Eco-Party - whatever, is mandatory I think.

Co2 needs to come down, right now, and the only feasible means is a combination of machines for direct air capture, and as many new methods of agricultural and wild land preservation as possible being implemented.

E.O.Wilson says half the Earth must be set aside to preserve 80% of biodiversity - that's right - HALF the Earth. That would fit in with the CO2 problem, n'est pa?

And human population must start to come down - ball park - five billion.

Now - yesterday would not have been too soon.

PS: The Paris Agreement is a bad joke. Not that it will ever be implemented by these 196 governments, which it won't. But even if it were, as it stands, even with implementation of the Paris Accords, the latest information from climate science suggests long term - without Direct Air Capture of CO2 - the long term increase as we stand now will likely be five degrees Centigrade, i.e., sea level many meters higher than now.

By the way, dump your antiquated use of English metrics and adopt for real Metric, the language of Science and most of the world.