Trumps Withdrawal from Paris Agreement sends ripples in Connecticut and around the world

Malloy to follow the agreement

The United States left the climate agreement this month, despite tremendous pushback from environmentally concerned voices within the international community and here at home.

The agreement consisted of 195 countries who agreed that the world must come together to lower emissions, more heavily utilize renewable or ‘green’ energies, and promote a cleaner world. The only nations that didn’t pledge themselves to the agreement were Nicaragua and Syria, Nicaragua’s government saying that the agreement didn’t do enough to help the environment and Syria’s government being occupied by a bloody civil war.

It was an historic agreement that was the world of dedicated civil servants and environment advocates managing to get world leaders to come together with an eye on the future, a future that we all share in. Now, the United States (the largest historical polluter, and one of the top polluters at present) has pulled out of the agreement.

This was an unpopular move, and the governors of many states, including our own, have pledged to abide by the Paris Climate Agreement. Dan Malloy, Governor of Connecticut, stated that leaving the agreement was a “grave mistake” and that Connecticut will now “lack a strong partner at the federal level.”

 

This does not mean our State government will follow suit; Connecticut is going to be one of the leading voices in the climate discussion. California, New York, and Washington states’ governors formed the United States Climate Alliance, and the day after the alliance was founded Connecticut joined in (along with Rhode Island, Massachusetts, Vermont, Oregon, and Hawaii). Virginia, Minnesota, Delaware, Puerto Rico, and the Mayor of Washington D.C. have also agreed to join the alliance, so that the alliance is representing over a third of the nation’s GDP and slightly under a third of its population as of June 7th, 2017.

Connecticut, which represents 0.64% of the US’s total emissions and produced 35 million tons of CO2 in 2014, has joined into this initiative and will be responsible for abiding by the spirit of the agreement. It is disheartening that the United States pulled out of the agreement in the first place, but now people across the Nutmeg state have the chance to look further into green energy, to develop more renewable energy in a cost-effective manner, and to create new jobs in the green energy industry. Connecticut’s contributions to US total emissions are already relatively low, but the state is working hard to reduce emissions.  

Together, bright minds across Connecticut can develop green energies and environmentally concerned citizens will look for ways to reduce their own energy use and carbon footprint. Together, Connecticuters and Americans will continue to be devoted to protecting and preserving the environment.