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Delawareans react to Trump's decision to pull the U.S. out of Paris Climate Accord

via Facebook Live.
A screenshot of President Trump announcing his decision about the U.S. in the Paris Accord.

President Trump’s announcement Thursday that he will pull the United States from the Paris Climate Accord is generating mixed reaction in Delaware.




Trump said the U.S. will negotiate re-entering the accord or “an entirely new transaction,” calling the Paris Accord unfair to the U.S. 




Dover resident Chip Lewis applauded Trump’s move, saying he thinks the agreement is a waste because climate change is irreversible.


“I think it’s a natural thing that happens with the Earth,” Lewis said.


Lewes resident Joseph Capone also agrees with the decision.


"I'm all for clean air and everything else but everybody's got to pay their fair share," Capone said.


The Paris Climate Accord is an agreement between 195 countries aiming to curb emissions, which would help curb global warming. The agreement took effect in November 2016. 


Citing research from the National Economic Research Association, Trump said if the U.S. continued to comply with the accord, it would cost the country 2.7 million jobs by 2025.


But Lewes resident Matt Ehlers said he doesn’t believe Trump’s offer to re-negotiate the agreement will work out. He said withdrawing the U.S. from the international effort is a “terrible decision.” 


“I think it might just be some kind of political posturing. Why get out of it now? Why even leave? I think the gains we had now, there’s no reason to leave now,” Ehlers said.


Ehlers said he sees the Paris Accord as a path toward making sure the current generation leaves the planet better, not worse for his children.


Although many people are left hanging on what effect withdrawing the U.S. from the Paris agreement and re-negotiating it could have on the country, Delaware Sierra Club’s Volunteer and Outreach Coordinator Stephanie Herron said Delawareans can still do their part to curb emissions, global warming and sea level rise in the First State.


“We have a huge opportunity to create thousands of clean energy jobs and drastically reduce the air pollution that create health disparities and climate change by updating our state's Renewable Portfolio Standard (the law that says Delaware utilities must get a certain percentage of their electricity from renewable sources) and other local policies,” Herron said.


She said she’s much more concerned about a proposal to alter the state's Coastal Zone Act, a near-50-year effort to protect the environment.

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