Australian news, and some related international items

It will be hard for Trump to wind back international and domestic action on climate change

trump-worldDonald Trump: Paris climate change delegates hopeful presidency will not derail agreement The World Today  By Katherine Gregory Delegates at annual climate change talks in Morocco are hopeful Donald Trump’s presidency will not derail progress made on action.

Representatives from 200 countries are at the Marrakech summit finalising the details of the Paris Agreement on climate change, which commits governments to keeping a global temperature rise to well below 2 degrees Celsius.

Tina Johnson from the US Climate Network said the movement had its work cut out for it now.

“I think if we have a scenario where the action that he takes is contrary to where we feel it needs to be going, it will impact us, of course, because it means we have to do more work to make sure that he actually is moving in the direction that we need him to move in,” she said.

Mr Trump is a well-known climate change sceptic and has threatened to remove America from the treaty.

But Australia’s Climate Council CEO Amanda McKenzie said it was going to be difficult for him to do that. “It’s also important to note that the US climate action has come from the states,” Ms McKenzie said. “California has been driving much of the climate action and support for renewable energy in the US.

“As well as [US President Barack] Obama’s work has through regulations — which are very hard to unwind once they’re changed and in place and have impacts on the community. “So it’s very hard for Trump to wind back international or domestic action on climate change.

“That said, of course it is a blow if he does want to take the US out of the Accord, but we need to remember this agreement is more than just one country.”

Trump says climate change a Chinese hoax Mr Trump has previously labelled climate change a hoax and conspiracy by the Chinese. He gave similar comments in July this year when interviewed by Bill O’Reilly from Fox News.

“If you look at what’s going on in China and all these other countries, they talk and laugh behind out back at what we’re doing,” Mr Trump said.

“We want clean air, clean water. I’ve got many environmental awards.” Mr O’Reilly asked him: “OK, but did you ever call climate change a hoax?”

Mr Trump responded: “Well I might have, because when I look at things that are going on.”

“In fact, when you look at Europe, where they had their big summit a couple of years ago, where people were sending out emails, scientists practically calling it a hoax.”

At the Marrakech summit, Greenpeace china policy advisor Li Shuo said Mr Trump’s presidency meant climate change was now a geopolitical battle between the US and China.

“We urge the next US president to take that into consideration and to be mindful of the very delicate agreement it has reached with China, in terms of US and China doing bilateral agreements, and to honour the commitments and the targets it has made with China and also in the Paris Agreement.”

‘It may mean other countries do more’Ms McKenzie said it was now up to other countries to step up to the plate. “Because so many other countries have made a substantial commitments to this, and countries like China, Brazil, the EU, Germany have all been pushing ahead on this, and I think it’s unlikely they will go backwards in their climate action,” she said.

“So it may mean other countries do more and take more leadership.”

Mr Trump has flagged he will stop all US Government funding of clean energy projects and climate change initiatives.

Experts are concerned that may also include dumping Mr Obama’s $US3 billion pledge to the Green Climate Fund, which is supposed to help vulnerable countries like those in the Pacific adapt to climate change.

International climate organisation‘s Cambell Klose said Australia’s ratifying of the Paris Agreement, albeit late, provided hope on a dark day for the climate change movement.

But he said Mr Trump’s election and the republican control of the US Senate and Congress meant there will be little resistance to any changes he might make. “We know that he will rescind or get rid of Obama’s executive orders of climate change, which puts caps on emissions on coal stations and saw a lot of coal stations close over the last five years,” Mr Klose said. “He’s flagged he wants to see the coal industry flourish again.

“The most disappointing thing is he’s looking to strip as many subsidies from renewable energy as possible and focus on drilling and it seems as though he wants to drill for oil on a lot of federal land and this could include national parks.”

November 10, 2016 - Posted by | Uncategorized

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