And then there were two: U.S. and Syria are the last Paris climate agreement holdouts
The United States and war-torn Syria are the only countries outside of the Paris Agreement, an international agreement to attack climate change and its effects in a global community facing intensified natural disasters and environmental injustice. On Monday, Nicaraguan Vice President and first lady Rosario Murillo announced that the Latin nation will join the agreement. Reuters reported Murillo’s explanation to local radio. Murillo called the agreement “the only instrument we have in the world that allows the unity of intentions and efforts to face up to climate change and natural disasters.”
The Paris agreement includes a shared goal of keeping the global temperature lower, appropriating money for environmentally friendly initiatives, creating innovative technology and building frameworks that keep an eye toward respecting vulnerable countries’ autonomy and encouraging their action.
Previously, Nicaragua declined. However, this hurricane season, and its deadly and damaging effects on vulnerable tropical communities, seemed to shift Nicaraguan leadership toward joining the more than 190 signatory countries in the agreement.
On the flip side, America barrels backwards in time and prioritizes capital—for a select few—over sustained environmental quality for all. Earlier this month, the Environmental Protection Agency administrator Scott Pruitt announced a coal-loving focus for the department. President Donald Trump announced American withdrawal from the Paris agreement in June.
The Trump administration’s refusal to support the Paris agreement, a United Nations pact, is consistent with the isolationism he presented the UN at the General Assembly. Meanwhile, Americans in both Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands scramble to put their lives back together after severe hurricane damage and initial administrative apathy to their plights.