PARIS CLIMATE AGREEMENT
In December 2015, industrial global powers united in an effort to slow down the acceleration of the threats resulting in climate change. During the landmark summit 195 nations signed the declaration - only Syria and Nicaragua opted out. Central to the agreement is the determined effort pledged by global powers to apply stringent rules that will conserve earth's natural resources, and curb the level of pollution ejected into the atmosphere. Some of the important goals outlined include keeping temperature below 2 °C (3.6 °F) above pre-industrial levels by 2100, while pursuing efforts to limit temperature increase even further by 1.5 °C. This is to be achieved by controlling industrial and human activity which leads to the emission of harmful gases into the atmosphere. And to make sure that the signatories comply with the agreement, a review of each country's pollution level is conducted every five years. Fast forward to 2017, almost 147 countries out of the pack of 195 have already ratified the agreement. This list include the world's biggest polluters: China, India, the United States, and the European Union. The Paris Agreement was signed by the Obama Administration on behalf of the US.
At the time Barack Obama said: "This agreement sends a powerful signal, that the world is firmly committed to a low-carbon future, and that has the potential to unleash investment and innovation in clean energy at a scale we've never seen before."
However, the new American administration ripped up the agreement and pulled out of its commitments. Donald Trump called global warming a Chinese hoax. He also added that it is a global scam for a lot of people to make a lot of money. But as part of the deal, the US will have to remain in the accord for at least another three years, and wait another year after that before it can be officially relieved of its binding duties. However, taking into account that the US is the second biggest emitter of CO2, what does it mean to climate change that it has ripped up the Paris Climate Agreement? Trump's advisors argue that the agreement commit the US to an excessive amount of financial contributions to be paid into the Global Green Fund - an initiative that urges rich countries to finance clean energy projects in developing nations - with very little to show for. The counter argument, however, sees the cancellation of the agreement by the US as poor leadership for a country turning its back on the fight to build a more sustainable future, because it does not serve its long-term economic interests.