Without the U.S., Does Paris Climate Deal Collapse?

Without the U.S., Does Paris Climate Deal Collapse?

April 18, 2017

A senior member of the U.S. State Department’s Paris negotiating team explores the implications of a Trump administration pullback from global climate deal.

The Trump administration has offered conflicting messages around its intention to honor U.S. commitments under the 2015 Paris Climate Accord.  Still in the early days of his presidency, President Trump has launched a range of efforts to roll back domestic climate protections, most notably his recent executive order to withdraw support for the Clean Power Plan, and his promise to weaken automotive fuel economy standards.  Both are essential to the U.S. meeting its Paris climate goals.

Yet some voices in the administration, and within the energy industry, have urged the President to “maintain a seat at the table” of global climate dialogue.

Andrew Light, former member of the U.S. State Department’s Paris climate negotiating team, explores the outlook for constructive U.S. participation in the effort to combat climate change and the fate of a global, coordinated climate effort.

Andrew Light is a Distinguished Senior Fellow in the Global Climate Program at the World Resources Institute and Director of the Institute for Philosophy and Public Policy at George Mason University.  From 2013 to 2016 he worked for the U.S. State Department, where he was Chair of the Interagency Climate Working Group on UN Sustainable Development Goals, and he served on the senior strategy team for UN Climate Negotiations.  Earlier, he was Director of International Climate Policy at the Center for American Progress.\


Recent Kleinman Center publications on the challenges of addressing climate change are available through these links