The French president’s call to “Make our planet great again” is more likely to occur if we renew efforts to make the Paris Agreement work.
Emmanuel Macron Takes Aim At Trump On Climate Change In Congressional Address Some people care more about job growth than the survival of future generations, he said. French President Emmanuel Macron extolled the Franco-American relationship on multiple fronts but issued a stern warning about the need to address climate change during his address to a joint session of Congress on Wednesday. Speaking entirely in English, Macron laid out the numerous ways ― human rights, trade, terrorism ― in which both the U.S. and France must strengthen multilateral ties in order to confront what he called a “new world order” marked by violence and conflict. His most forceful comments came in the form of a veiled rebuke against President Donald Trump on climate policy. Macron has emerged as a leader in the fight to protect the legitimacy of the Paris climate agreement after Trump announced that the U.S. would withdraw last June. Minutes after Trump’s announcement, Macron tweeted a slogan riffing off of Trump’s own campaign rallying cry: “Make our planet great again.” (April 25, 2018) Huffington Post [more on Climate Change in our area]
Outside the US, the rest of the world understands that only under a worldwide-agreed framework can humanity address Climate Change on a scale and time frame that will matter. [See: “Governments Meet in Bonn To Step Up Climate Action Critical to the implementation of Paris Agreement” (April 28, 2018 United Nations Climate Change)]
There is an unfortunate truth about humanity’s collective ability for solving issues like Climate Change, which it seems we are going to learn only too late: voluntary efforts are not enough to address big environmental problems. Of course, voluntary efforts are critical, and the public should be engaged in solving them locally. But thinking we can slough off our environmental problems to only those who care enough to inconvenience themselves to take on these problems alone is a delusion.
Voluntary Efforts Aren't Enough To Stop Lake Erie Pollution, Study Shows Research into Lake Erie's toxic algae shows no clear decrease in the pollutants feeding the persistent blooms during the past five years, according to an Ohio Environmental Protection Agency report. The review also finds that nearly all of the phosphorus and nitrogen flowing from Ohio's streams and rivers into the lake's western end is coming mainly from agriculture runoff. The data backs up what environmental groups have been saying for years and what the head of the state EPA said last month: Voluntary steps farmers have taken to scale back the fertilizers feeding Lake Erie's massive algae blooms aren't enough. (April 23, 2018) WOSU Public Media [more on Great Lakes and Water Quality in our area]
Many folks have taken a stance that government, taxpayers’ money, should not be used to support environmental regulations. And some people believe so much in the free market system that they think it alone will solve our environmental problems. There have been and still are innumerable ways we have tried to wriggle out of our environmental responsibilities to future generations.
But the evidence for cleaning up and protecting our environment leans towards strong environmental regulations based on science and strict enforcement.
The evidence is that we will not magically mature ourselves into a sustainable future. Getting back to a planet where our children’s children will thrive is going to be inconvenient and difficult. It’s going to be more so given our inability to appreciate our fundamental relationship to our environment. We have strayed far from the right path: CO2 is Regularly Exceeding 410 Parts Per Million for First Time in Human History (April 25, 2018) ROBERTSCRIBBLER.