- By David FrancisDavid Francis is a senior reporter for Foreign Policy, where he covers international finance. An award-winning journalist, David has reported from all over Europe, Nigeria, Kenya, Mexico, and Afghanistan on terrorism, national security, the geopolitics of energy, global economics, and the European financial crisis. His work has been published in outlets including the Christian Science Monitor, the Financial Times Deutschland, Slate, and SportsIllustrated.com.
President Donald Trump will announce this afternoon from the Rose Garden his decision on whether the United States will remain a party to the 2015 Paris climate accord, a landmark pact meant to reduce global emissions of greenhouse gases that cause climate change.
The first truly global climate change accord — the 1997 Kyoto pact was only binding on developed countries — some 195 countries are signatories, and 147 have ratified it.
Only Syria and Nicaragua have refused to sign the agreement — and that’s because renewable-energy crazy Nicaragua wanted a more ambitious deal.
The president has several options. He could announce that the United States is abandoning the agreement, but it would take until 2020 to actually leave. That could leave his eventual successor with a way back in.
He could pull the United States out of the U.N. Framework Convention on Climate Change, the 1992 agreement that is the international latticework for all climate change measures, from the Kyoto Accords to Paris. That would be a quicker way out, but would also be more drastic, taking the United States entirely out the global discussion about climate change and how to fight it.
Or, he could break a campaign promise and listen to advisers like his daughter Ivanka and Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, who have urged him to stay in the pact.
Trump has been getting pressure to stay in from business circles. The head of Exxon Mobil wrote Trump a personal letter, urging him not to withdraw from the agreement. Elon Musk, the head of Tesla Motors and a member of Trump’s Business Advisory Council, said he’d be forced to quit advising the White House if Trump pulls out of Paris.
Watch Trump’s announcement below.