President Donald Trump has announced the United States of America will be pulling out of the Paris Climate change agreement. The President in a speech confirmed the US will no longer be a party to the Paris Accord of 2015. In his speech, President Trump said, “The United States will withdraw from the Paris Climate Accord and begin negotiations to reenter either the Paris Accord or a really entirely new transaction on terms that are fair to the United States, its businesses, its workers, its people, its taxpayers.”
According to Trump, the United States “will cease all implementation of the non-binding Paris Accord,” and it will also end all the “implementation of the nationally determined contribution” including the Green Climate Fund, which, according to him, has cost the country “a vast fortune”. While the world is still reeling from the impact of the US pulling out of the Paris Accord on Climate Change, leaders from Silicon Valley have come out to speak against this decision.
SpaceX and Tesla CEO Elon Musk, who has been very vocal about climate change, tweeted that he would be leaving the presidential councils in light of the decision. Musk tweeted, “Am departing presidential councils. Climate change is real. Leaving Paris is not good for America or the world.” Elon Musk has also tweeted articles about how India and China are trying to cut down on greenhouse gas emissions, which is believed to be the number one source for pollutants and thus contributing to climate change.
Musk tweeted an article on how China wants to produce clean electricity, saying: “Under Paris deal, China committed to produce as much clean electricity by 2030 as the US does from all sources today.” On India, the Tesla CEO tweeted, “India commits to sell only electric cars by 2030. It is already the largest market for solar power.”
Apple CEO Tim Cook has also spoken out against the decision. Cook tweeted, “Decision to withdraw from the #ParisAgreeement was wrong for our planet. Apple is committed to fight climate change, and we will never waver.” According to a report on CNN, Tim Cook also sent out a message to Apple employees assuring them the US government’s decision wouldn’t mean that Apple would stop caring about the environment and climate change.
The report on CNN quotes Tim Cook’s message as saying, “I want to reassure you that today’s developments will have no impact on Apple’s efforts to protect the environment.” The report also says Tim Cook had spoken to President Trump in the hope of keeping US from leaving the Paris deal.
Google CEO Sundar Pichai also tweeted against President Trump’s decision. He wrote, “Disappointed with today’s decision. Google will keep working hard for a cleaner, more prosperous future for all.” Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg also voiced his criticism, saying it was bad for the economy and puts “our children’s future at risk.”
Facebook’s co-founder wrote on his personal page, “Withdrawing from the Paris climate agreement is bad for the environment, bad for the economy…” adding as a company they had committed that every new data center built by them will be “powered by 100% renewable energy.”
“Stopping climate change is something we can only do as a global community, and we have to act together before it’s too late,” he wrote.
Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella also criticised the decision, saying “climate change is an urgent issue that demands global action”. He said Microsoft is committed to fighting this, and shared a letter by Microsoft’s President and Chief Legal Officer Brad Smith, which has discussed this issue at length.
“In the past few months, Microsoft has actively engaged the Trump Administration on the business case for remaining in the Paris Agreement. We’ve sent letters to and held meetings on this topic with senior officials in the State Department and the White House. And in the past month, we’ve joined with other American business leaders to take out full-page ads in the New York Times, Wall Street Journal and New York Post, urging the Administration to keep the United States in the Paris Agreement,” says Smith’s letter.
Microsoft in its letter adds climate change demands global attention , and the company says they wish to keep their operations 100 per cent carbon neutral. “We remain steadfastly committed to the sustainability, carbon and energy goals that we have set as a company and to the Paris Agreement’s ultimate success,” concludes the letter.