The Minister of Environmental Protection of Israel Avi Gabbay signs the Paris Agreement at the signature ceremony for the Paris Agreement on climate change at United Nations headquarters in New York on April 22, 2016. 

And then there was one.

Last week, Syria officially signed up to the Paris Agreement, leaving the United States as the only country in the world not to support the framework of the global climate-rescue initiation.

Syrian officials announced their plan to ratify the accord at the United Nations Climate Change Conference.

"I confirm that the Syrian Arab Republic supports the implementation of Paris climate change accord, in order to achieve the desired global goals and to reflect the principles of justice and shared responsibility, but in accordance with the capabilities of each of the signatories," Syria's Deputy Minister of Local Administration and Environment M. Wadah Katmawi said.

There’s now literally everyone else — and then there’s the us. President Trump announced in a speech this summer that the United States would quit the deal, saying it harmed America’s economy. The Paris agreement, struck in 2015 under former President Barack Obama, calls on just under 200 countries to prevent greenhouse gas emissions.

When it was announced the U.S. was pulling out of the agreement, it joined Syria and Nicaragua as the three countries not involved. 

Nicaragua wasn’t signing because they believed the treaty did not do enough to fight against greenhouse gas. In October, however, the country ceased its object and signed.

Our president foolishly backed out of the deal, highlighting the disrespect for science and our planet.

Just a few months after Trump pulled out, however, the Trump administration admitted climate change is real and humans are causing it. This was stated in the Climate Science Special Report issued by the Trump administration.

The report acknowledges it is "extremely likely that human activities, especially emissions of greenhouse gases, are the dominant cause of the observed warming since the mid-20th century." 

So, do with that what you will.

Despite the administration's admission, Trump still seems to believe environmental regulations are job killers, that efforts to curb carbon dioxide emissions will hurt the economy.

As fake news goes, that argument really is something else. 

For those who do not know what the Paris Agreement is, here is a quick rundown: Every country is committed to fighting climate change by enacting its own plan to cut greenhouse gas emissions. Then, every five years, all parties would come together and talk progress.

The U.S. being the lone denier isn’t exactly the best news for our country. That Syria, which is full of war and division, has signed on to help fight climate change. Meanwhile, the U.S. cannot say the same.

Luckily, the U.S. can only withdraw four years after the deal officially entered the force, which was in November 2016. This means November 2020 - two months before Trump's term ends and right after the 2020 presidential election.

So, basically, we can save the planet by voting him out.

Editorial policy is determined by the student editor, and views expressed in editorials are those of the majority of The Vidette’s Editorial Board. Columns that carry bylines are the opinions of the author and do not necessarily represent those of The Vidette or the University.


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