In 2015, the United States, along with almost 200 other countries, joined the Paris Climate Agreement after the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change. The primary goal of the agreement was to address climate change by substantially reducing global greenhouse gas emissions. All major emitting countries (the US is the second-largest greenhouse gas emitter after China) committed to cut their climate pollution and gradually strengthen this commitment. Another goal of the agreement was to aid developing countries in their own climate efforts. Lastly, it provided an outline for the monitoring and reporting of climate goals.
The agreement imposed no legal obligations on the US, and in 2017, former-president Donald Trump announced the US would be withdrawing from the agreement, as he argued the agreement would negatively impact the economy. The withdrawal became official in November 2020.
President Joe Biden recommitted the United States to the agreement on January 20th, 2021. Furthermore, he ordered federal agents to begin reinstating environmental regulations that were weakened or rolled back by the previous administration. However, Biden has also emphasized the importance of creating legislation that positively impacts the environment, since all of his actions to date, including rejoining the Paris agreement, have been by executive order.
By: Johanna Murphy ‘23, Staff Writer
Categories: News@the Heart