After Dumping Paris Accords, US Leads World in Reduction of Carbon Emissions


While supporters of the Paris Agreement panned the Trump administration’s decision to withdraw from the multinational climate agreement, those who backed that move are pointing to evidence that indicates the U.S. is nevertheless leading the world in carbon emissions reduction.

The Daily Wire cited the recent BP Statistical Review of Global Energy, which found America cut more than twice the amount of the air pollutant as Ukraine, which came in second.

According to the data compiled last month, the carbon emissions in the U.S. during 2017 represented a drop of more than 42 million tons over the previous year. By comparison, Ukraine showed a reduction of roughly 20 million tons.

Among several nations still committed to the terms of the Paris accords, the results are much less impressive. In Spain, Canada, China and the European Union, 2017 actually saw a spike in the amount of carbon dioxide released into the atmosphere.

Others, including the United Kingdom, Mexico and Japan, joined the U.S. and Ukraine in emitting significantly fewer pollutants.

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Regardless of any nation’s performance, the United Nations-negotiated accords did not provide for any mechanism that would make its terms binding.

As a candidate and in office, President Donald Trump has frequently criticized the accords and moved last year to withdraw the U.S.

In a June 2017 statement announcing his intention to abandon the agreement, Trump called it “simply the latest example of Washington entering into an agreement that disadvantages the United States to the exclusive benefit of other countries, leaving American workers — who I love — and taxpayers to absorb the cost in terms of lost jobs, lower wages, shuttered factories, and vastly diminished economic production.”

The president went on to confirm that “the United States will cease all implementation of the non-binding Paris Accord and the draconian financial and economic burdens the agreement imposes on our country.”

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According to Trump, complying with the agreement constituted “onerous energy restrictions,” citing research that showed it “could cost America a much as 2.7 million jobs by 2025.”

Months later, reports indicated the U.S. might be considering a negotiation that would reintroduce the nation into the accords. A White House statement shortly thereafter, however, put any such speculation to rest.

“There has been no change in the United States’ position on the Paris agreement,” the statement read. “As the president has made abundantly clear, the United States is withdrawing unless we can re-enter on terms that are more favorable to our country.”

The American Enterprise Institute has analyzed the recent data and believes America’s unique energy production capabilities have helped keep the nation on the right environmental track. The conservative think tank specifically cited the process of hydraulic fracturing as well as increased drilling for natural gas as practices that have helped combat carbon emissions.

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Chris Agee is an American journalist with more than 15 years of experience in a wide range of newsrooms.
Chris Agee is an American journalist with more than 15 years of experience in a variety of newsroom settings. After covering crime and other beats for newspapers and radio stations across the U.S., he served as managing editor at Western Journalism until 2017. He has also been a regular guest and guest host on several syndicated radio programs. He lives in Phoenix, Arizona, with his wife and son.
Texas Press Association, Best News Writing - 2012
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