Donald Trump is many things, but we now know that in at least one area he would be a totally unique world leader if elected president: He would be the only leader of any nation to reject the science and dangers of climate change.
The Associated Press recently reported on a new study from the Sierra Club that reveals that every current world leader recognizes both the science of climate change and the dangers it poses to humanity.
Some have assumed that leaders of other nations around the world, including those countries most dependent on fossil fuels or with despotic leaders, hold similar views regarding climate denial and opposition to all climate action. But this study demonstrates that, from our closest allies like Canada, Japan and Germany, to the largest carbon emitters like India, China and Brazil, to the most fossil-fuel dependent states like Russia, Saudi Arabia and Venezuela, to countries as varied as Zimbabwe, North Korea and Fiji, the leaders of all nations accept the scientific consensus that man is fueling climate change by burning fossil fuels and are calling for urgent action.
America’s closest partners, like Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, have said that “climate change will test our intelligence, our compassion and our will. But we are equal to that challenge.” Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who attended the Paris climate conference, said there: “This is a pivotal issue of our time. … We are one planet, and climate knows no bounds.”
Trump, in stark contrast, has made his views clear over the last few years. In his opinion, “the scientists are having a lot of fun.” Over the years, he’s described climate change as a “hoax,” “mythical,” “nonexistent” a “con job,” and “bulls- – -.”
He even said that “the concept of global warming was created by and for the Chinese in order to make U.S. manufacturing non-competitive.”
In actual fact, NASA has made clear that “97 percent of climate scientists agree” on the fact that man is driving climate change by burning fossil fuels.
The Republican Party’s national leadership has long been a notable outlier in the global discussion and national debate on the climate crisis, climate science and the need for action. But it’s only now that we understand just how dangerously far out of step they and their new leader Donald Trump are on this critical issue.
Trump’s absurd position on climate change makes clear that his policies will not just harm the U.S. economy and businesses, but rejecting climate action would undermine America’s global leadership and influence around the world. The world is united as one behind climate action, and Trump’s promise to “cancel” the universal agreement reached in Paris while eliminating the Environmental Protection Agency would completely undermine our standing in the world community and our influence within key alliances.
While Trump claims he will negotiate “fantastic deals” with the rest of the world (think Atlantic City), the reality is that he is poised to undermine decades of progress this country and the world have made on climate action, environmental protection, and ensuring cleaner air to breathe and water to drink. The truth is that Donald Trump is toxic to our environment, noxious to our standing on the world stage.
In contrast, Hillary Clinton believes that “every child and every family in America deserves clean air to breathe, clean water to drink, and a safe and healthy place to live.” She has and will be a leader on the international climate stage who will build upon our alliances and the progress made in Paris.
What is absolutely clear now is that anyone who cares about the future of humanity’s only home in the universe cannot afford to sit on the sidelines in 2016. We don’t have time to waste four years on the future of this planet. It’s not just all the progress we’ve made on climate action that’s on the line, it’s the health and safety of our families today and future generations to come.
That’s just one of the reasons you can be sure that the Sierra Club will be doing everything we can to elect Hillary Clinton the next president of the United States.