Everything You Need to Know About the Paris Climate Agreement

A newspaper with a front page headline that reads, "Global Warming."

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As rumors continue to circulate that President Trump is planning to withdraw from the Paris Climate Agreement, many Americans are left wondering how that would impact the U.S. The truth is, withdrawing from the Paris Climate Agreement would have both positive and negative effects. Here’s the scoop.

What is the Paris Climate Agreement?

The Paris Climate Agreement is a pact among 195 countries to prevent the world’s surface temperatures from rising 1.5 degrees Celsius above where they were prior to the Industrial Revolution. Why 1.5 degrees? Because climate scientists have warned that if the earth’s surface temperatures rise more than 2 degrees Celsius, it would bring about irreversible, catastrophic damage. Syria and Nicaragua are the only two nations that have not signed the agreement.

What are some of the pros of withdrawing from the Paris Climate Agreement?

The biggest pro would come in the form of less environmental regulations, which would benefit lots of companies, specifically fossil fuel companies. Additionally, it’s worth noting that the latest figures from the National Economic Research Council show that the Paris Climate Agreement could result in a $3 trillion loss in GDP, a 6.5 million loss in industrial jobs, and a $7,000 loss in per capita income from the American economy by 2040.

What are some of the cons of withdrawing from the Paris Climate Agreement?

The main concern is that withdrawing from the Paris Climate Agreement would result in higher CO2 emissions, which contributes to global warming. According to the European Commission’s emissions database, the U.S. is already the second worst CO2 emitter in the world. If the U.S. and other countries don’t start investing in clean energy alternatives, then the world could start seeing the effects of global warming which include rising seas, mass extinctions, droughts, and super storms.

Trump is poised to announce his decision today at 3 p.m.

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