Trump appears to be on the verge of pulling out of the Paris Climate Accord, an act that this article condemns in no uncertain terms. The Truthout piece is entitled: Paris Accord Doesn’t Go Far Enough — but Trump’s Pullout Will Endanger Life on Earth and one quoted commentator labels the US a ‘rogue nation’ as a consequence of such a decision.
This discussion “On Tyranny” between Sam Harris and Timothy Snyder, Yale professor of history, draws from Snyder’s recent book and illustrates how the Trump rise to power reflects the processes that brought dictators to power in the past by successfuly attacking the rule of law, accusing the press of being the enemies of the people and above all, discrediting democratic institutions and evidence-based truths. The choice of favouring the profit of the fossil fuel industries over the future of the planet and its peoples fits into this analysis. Snyder observes that the normalisation of events and distorted ‘truths’ and language must be opposed especially in the early days on the road to tyranny before public resistance is weakened. He compares 2016 with 1933 in the democratically elected rise of the leader of Nazi tyranny.
As news of the likely Trump climate change ignoring decision emerged, the following report on the calving of a huge Antarctic Ice Shelf (Larsen C )was issued. A coincidence or somehow the heralding of a consequence of Trump’s preference for economic growth over ecological stability?
The Paris Accord is meant to limit the global rise in temperature attributed to emissions. Countries agreed to:
- Keep global temperatures “well below” the level of 2C (3.6F) above pre-industrial times and “endeavour to limit” them even more, to 1.5C
- Limit the amount of greenhouse gases emitted by human activity to the same levels that trees, soil and oceans can absorb naturally, beginning at some point between 2050 and 2100
- Review each country’s contribution to cutting emissions every five years so they scale up to the challenge
- Enable rich countries to help poorer nations by providing “climate finance” to adapt to climate change and switch to renewable energy
To date, 147 out of the 197 countries have ratified the accord, including the US, where the accord entered into force last November.