In a dramatic statement Tesla leader Elon Musk left his national advisory post in protest over the United State’s June 1st decision to withdraw from the Paris Climate Agreement (PCA). When questioned he stated, “Climate change is real. Leaving Paris is not good for America or the world.” A big proponent of protecting the environment, this statement from Musk carries weight. It’s further inspiring that other business leaders, inside and outside the green community, showed their concern about this questionable action. Disney President Robert Iger also vacated his national advisory post, and companies like ExxonMobil, though in an industry impacted the most by the regulations of the PCA, have said publicly they do not support withdrawing from the Agreement.
What is the Paris Climate Agreement signed in In 2015? 195 counties negotiated a pact to make conscious efforts to combat climate change worldwide by reducing emissions harmful to the environment. Within this accord, larger countries like ours are looked at as examples to smaller countries to toe the line and do their part, so this is a shocking move and to many, a backwards step. It naturally sparks concern that less developed countries with poor earth-friendly manufacturing track records may follow suit and be shielded from reprimand hidden behind the US’s disappointing precedent.
While this decision to split from the PCA is debatably ill advised, there is some positive news. The EU and China have voiced plans to recommit to the PCA with or without the United States. Some countries like China are actually ahead of their scheduled emission lowering promises. States like California have pledged to pick up the slack by instituting their own emission laws. Mayors across the country have rejected this act and are banding together to do more, and the US as a whole has already funded one billion of our three billion dollar pledge to the PCA.
Most importantly, environmental scientists believe that with the current trend in the United States towards eco-consciousness, we may end up reaching our PCA goal by 2019 when this withdrawal would be able to take effect. For that, all of us in the green community get to pat ourselves on the back: our and your commitment to solar power and electric/hybrid cars has and does make a difference! Renewable energy is cleaner, cheaper and just better for all of our current lives and children’s futures. And the solar panels on your roof are now a beacon of our continued pact with rest of the world.
So far, 194 countries are still pledged to continue fighting climate change on a large scale. Let’s all pledge to continue doing the same in our individual lives. The green community can change the world!