Environmentalists across the world are stunned by the outcome of Tuesday’s presidential election results that saw Donald Trump, a climate change denier, win the White House as Republicans retake control Congress.
Environmentalists are now questioning how much of the environmental policy progress adopted under President Barack Obama could soon become unraveled under a Trump administration.
President elect Donald Trump has called climate change a “hoax”, and previously said that the concept of global warming was created by and for the Chinese in order to make U.S. manufacturing non-competitive, a conspiracy theory refuted by Beijing and leading international environmentalists.
The concept of global warming was created by and for the Chinese in order to make U.S. manufacturing non-competitive.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 6, 2012
Trump has pledged to cancel the 2015 climate change agreement reached in Paris and will soon have executive powers at his disposal to work for policy changes beginning in January.
Promising to lower environmental regulations, Trump has appointed a leading environmental climate change denier to head his transition team for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) through his selection of Myron Ebell, a non-scientist, who serves as Director of Global Warming and International Environmental Policy at the right leaning Competitive Enterprise Institute.
Ebell is also chairman of the Cooler Heads Coalition, a group that aims to “question global warming alarmism.”
UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) Meets In Marrakesh
Environmental policy makers are currently meeting in Marrakesh, Morocco for the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), also known as COP-22, which runs from November 10-18th.
U.S. Special Envoy for Climate Change Dr. Jonathan Pershing is present at the Marrakesh environmental convention, focused on policy implementation and action concerning the historic adoption of the Paris Agreement at COP-21 in December 2015 that aims to lower the global temperature rise this century well below 2 degrees Celsius and to undertake efforts to limit the temperature rise even further to 1.5 degrees Celsius.
According to the UN sponsored Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), the current trajectory of greenhouse gas emission rates will cause global temperatures to rise by 4°C by the end of this century.
“Scientific evidence for warming of the climate system is unequivocal” the IPCC concluded.
The IPCC states that the burning of coal, natural gas, and oil for electricity and heat is the largest single source of global greenhouse gas emissions.
NASA satellite observations show that the amount of spring snow cover in the Northern Hemisphere has notably decreased over the past five decades and that snow is melting earlier.
The U.S. fossil fuel industry, which president elect Donald Trump has vowed to support during his presidency over renewables, is the primary source of carbon dioxide (CO2).
Based on 2011 data from Carbon Dioxide Information Analysis Center, China (28%) and the United States (16 %) are the 2 leading carbon emitters in the world.
The U.S. has currently set a target in the range of a 17 per cent emission reduction by 2020 compared with 2005 levels.
The pathway established in pending legislation also includes a 30 percent emission reduction by 2025 and a 42 percent emission reduction by 2030, in line with the goal to lower emissions by 83 percent by 2050 as long as the other participating nations submit emission mitigation action plans that are consistent with the framework of the Paris agreement.
To address the “pressing mitigation and adaptation needs of developing countries” advanced economies through the Green Climate Fund (GCF), have formally agreed to contribute $100 billion per year by 2020 from public and private sources.
The financial commitment from the U.S. to the Green Climate Fund is currently on the table in Marrakesh, Morocco with $ 500 million already been given.
In November 2014 President Obama announced the United States would contribute $3 billion to the Green Climate Fund (GCF) after the Bush Administration’s pledge of $2 billion in 2008 to the Climate Investment Funds, which provides temporary financial support for developing countries to address climate change.