And then there was one. The United States at this point is the only nation in the world that has yet to agree to sign the Paris agreement on climate change. This comes after Syria, the only other holdout, signed the agreement. President Trump has yet to comment on whether he will reconsider the agreement in light of this new development.
Syria signing the agreement surprised many within the United Nations. The fact that the country is in the middle of a civil war with most of its populace fleeing to other countries for safety has long been regarded as a legitimate reason why the country might choose not to focus on the issue of climate change at this time.
Nicaragua, a country who initially refused to sign the agreement claiming it to be too “lenient,” finally agreed to sign last month, according to The Guardian.
During this same time, President Trump has claimed that the US has no interest in signing the “unfair” Paris agreement.
“The bottom line is that the Paris accord is very unfair at the highest level to the United States,” Trump said in an official statement in September.
According to The Hill, Trump and his administration informed the other countries within the agreement that the US would be pulling out of the agreement as soon as it was possible to do so. The next possible date would be in 2020, the same year Trump is up for re-election.
Many nations have criticized Trump and the US for the decision not to sign the accord. North Korea, a source of tension within the UN for the last decade, even agreed to the terms submitted for the accord.
Michael Brune, Executive Director of an American environmental organization, had harsh words for Trump when news broke that Syria would sign the accord — leaving the US as the only nation refusing to sign.
“As if it wasn’t already crystal clear, every single other country in the world is moving forward together to tackle the climate crisis, while Donald Trump has isolated the United States on the world stage in an embarrassing and dangerous position.”
As the only remaining country in the world that has yet to sign, Trump and his administration may bow to pressure and reverse their original decision. Only time will tell.