Trump announces withdraw from climate deal, lawmakers UofL professor discuss the consequences

06/01/2017 04:23 PM

President Donald Trump has withdrawn the United States from a deal struck with all but two countries aimed at reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

The 2015 Paris accord agreed to by the United States under President Obama and 147 parties or countries in an attempt to keep global temperatures from rising.

In calling off the deal, Trump said he was protecting the United State and citizens and that there could be a new deal put in place.

“..but begin negotiations reenter the Paris accord or an entirely new transaction on terms that are fair to the United States — its businesses, its workers, its people, its taxpayers,” he said.

“We will start to negotiate and we will see if we can make a deal that’s fair,” Trump continued in a statement delivered from the White House. “And if we can that’s great, and if we can’t that’s fine.”

President Obama issued a statement upon Trump’s decision calling the Paris accord an attempt from global leaders to protect the world we leave to our children.

“The nations that remain in the Paris Agreement will be the nations that reap the benefits in jobs and industries created,” Obama said in a statement. “I believe the United States of America should be at the front of the pack. But even in the absence of American leadership; even as this Administration joins a small handful of nations that reject the future; I’m confident that our states, cities, and businesses will step up and do even more to lead the way, and help protect for future generations the one planet.”

Kentucky’s lone Democratic federal official U.S. Rep. John Yarmuth of Louisville said the decision from Trump makes it clear that the United States is not only abdicating its role as a world leader but is staking a claim as one of the great threats to global progress.

“Last year, the world’s nations came together out of urgent necessity and agreed with near unanimity to work together in combating the most pressing crisis of our time,” Yarmuth said. “The President’s decision to now reverse course betrays our allies, undermines our credibility, and exacerbates a global catastrophe. There are no winners in this decision.

“America’s influence will now dwindle, the climate will continue to wreak havoc, and — despite the myths perpetuated by the President and his anti-science allies — our economy will suffer tremendously,” Yarmuth continued. “Doubling down on denial will not bring back coal jobs, and the bliss of this ignorant misstep will be short-lived once the dire consequences begin to take their toll.”

In an interview with Fox News Thursday, U.S. Sen. Rand Paul, R-Kentucky, called the climate deal a “disaster for American jobs.”

“President Trump has shown a great deal of concern for workers in my state, people in the energy industry, and really for American jobs in general,” Paul said before the news was official.

Dr. Peter Meyer, Professor Emeritus for Urban Policy and Economics at the University of Louisville, spoke with Spectrum News on Thursday from his home in Pennsylvania.

Meyer said climate changes could cost $44 trillion in lost gross domestic product over the next 50 years if nothing is done about it.

In the near term, Meyer worries the European Union and other countries could begin administering a carbon content tariff which could disadvantage states like Kentucky and the nation.

Watch the full interview with Meyer including his thoughts on bring clean energy into Kentucky.

Nick Storm

Nick Storm is the Anchor and Managing Editor of Pure Politics available exclusively on Spectrum News. Pure Politics is the only nightly program dedicated to Kentucky politics. Nick covers all of the political heavyweights and his investigative work brings to light issues that might otherwise go unnoticed, like his coverage of the backlog of DNA rape kits waiting to be tested in Kentucky. Nick is also working on a feature length bio documentary Outlaw Poet: A documentary on Ron Whitehead. Pure Politics airs weeknight at 7 and 11:30 on Spectrum News. Follow Nick on Twitter @NStorm_Politics. Nick can be reached at 502-792-1107 or nicholas.storm@charter.com.

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