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house Bill H.R. 9

Should the U.S. Stay in the Paris Agreement?

Argument in favor

The Paris Agreement is an important step towards addressing climate change. The U.S. needs to stay in the agreement, both to signal its own commitment towards addressing global warming and to ensure that other nations also make efforts to address climate change.

SVL's Opinion
···
04/28/2019
The US has an obligation as a global citizen and as a significant carbon emitter to participate in the effort to combat climate change. Moreover, participating allows us to share not only the challenges, but also the benefits of these efforts, as well as providing us a seat at the table in discussion and development of such efforts.
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Kodiwodi's Opinion
···
05/01/2019
For so many reasons it is important for us to rejoin the Paris Agreement. We have an obligation to the Planet to clean up our act. We must act as a model for hesitant countries to invest in clean renewable resources. We have a need to provide a reliable partner to those who have not pulled out for the safety and health of all our citizens while reestablishing cordial diplomatic relationships with former allies. Normalization of the Climate would most likely stem the tide of Climate Crisis refugees allowing them to remain in place and lead sustainable lives. We need to reestablish our country’s reputation for being a World Leader in science and innovation, rather than maintaining our idiotic stance on climate crisis denial. We are running out of time to do the correct responsible things to improve our environment for our survival and our children’s futures. Get back in and let’s lead the way to the planets salvation.
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···
04/28/2019
The United States need to show the world that we are a leader in combating threats common to all of humanity. That includes things like nuclear proliferation, dictatorships, basic human rights, and climate change. By staying in the Paris climate accord we will be helping ourselves avoid billions in damage and thousands of American deaths due worsening to severe weather, including more and stronger tornados and hurricanes, frequent flooding and polarizing droughts. If we do not do commit our country to combatting it our allies will begin to see the US - not just as a weakened power and influence, but also a problem that they will have to combat. Americans abroad will be thought of as dirty polluters and could be treated poorly even in countries where we now enjoy favorable opinion and are allowed to travel to safely. All of this is more important than the upfront cost of shifting away from fossil fuels.
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Argument opposed

The Paris Agreement doesn’t go far enough to address climate change, so staying in it won’t do much to slow climate change. This bill also has virtually no chance of becoming law, as Senate Republicans and President Trump won’t agree to its enactment.

Jan's Opinion
···
04/28/2019
America should absolutely leave the Paris Agreement. The primary polluters are China and India. Much American business is incentivized on its own to be conscientious environmentally. The Paris agreement was not made out of consideration to the American taxpayer.
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Donald's Opinion
···
04/28/2019
Hell no. Why should the USA commit economic suicide and also support a multitude of socialist and communist countries. Only a fool would sign up for an agreement like that.
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Mark's Opinion
···
05/01/2019
The Paris Agreement is a farce. There is no compliance mechanism. Do not rejoin it. Do our own thing.
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bill Progress


  • Not enacted
    The President has not signed this bill
  • The senate has not voted
  • The house Passed May 2nd, 2019
    Roll Call Vote 231 Yea / 190 Nay
      house Committees
      Committee on Energy and Commerce
      Committee on Foreign Affairs
    IntroducedMarch 27th, 2019

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What is House Bill H.R. 9?

This bill — the Climate Action Now Act — would prohibit the use of federal funds to take any action withdrawing the U.S. from the Paris Agreement (which is a non-binding agreement to limit increases in global temperature). It’d also call on the president to develop and publicize a plan for the U.S. to meet the pollution reduction goals it committed to at the Paris Agreement in 2015.

Impact

Climate change; U.S. withdrawal from the Paris Agreement; Paris Agreement on climate change; and President Trump.

Cost of House Bill H.R. 9

$1.00 Million
Although costs to implement this bill’s provisions could vary significantly, CBO estimates that implementing this bill would cost around $1 million over the 2019-2024 period.

More Information

In-DepthRep. Kathy Castor (D-FL), Chair of the Select Committee on the Climate Crisis, introduced this bill to demand action on the climate crisis, ensure the U.S. honors its Paris Agreement commitments, and lay the groundwork for future action to address climate change:

“It was with America’s leadership and engagement that so many nations committed to climate action in the international Paris Agreement.  Despite what President Trump has said, America cannot and will not retreat. We will keep our commitments to fight the climate crisis. This is just the start of action by House Democrats in this Congress. We can create millions of good-paying clean energy jobs right now. We can save billions of dollars in energy costs for working people right now.  We can finally address decades of environmental injustice right now. And we can respond to the incredible groundswell of activism from young people who are demanding climate action now as well. They are the first generation to grow up in the climate crisis. Now they are demanding the chance to be the generation that solves it. Speaking as a Floridian who boarded up and fled my home with my family as Hurricane Irma spun its destructive winds and storm surge towards my hometown a year and a half ago, I understand we must act with urgency on the climate crisis. The Climate Action Now Act will help us carry out our moral obligation to future generations to tackle this crisis now.”

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) says climate change is a “caucus-wide priority” for Democrats, and calls this bill “only step one” in the Democratic party’s efforts to address climate change in the 116th Congress. In remarks at this bill’s introduction, she expressed her caucus’ support, emphasizing the jobs that’ll be created by addressing climate change and arguing that there’s a moral imperative to address climate change:

“[C]limate crisis is an existential threat of our generation, of our time, a crisis manifested in natural disasters of epic proportions. Today, the House Democratic Majority is honoring the will of the people and taking first strong steps to protect our planet and our future. The bill – this is about jobs. It’s about good-paying green jobs.  It’s about advancing our economy and our global preeminence in green technology. It’s about health, it’s about public health and clean air and clean water for our children. It’s about defending our national security. The evidence is clear. The national security experts have spoken. This is a national security issue. And for many of us, it’s a moral issue.  If you do believe, as I do, that this is God’s creation, this planet, we have a moral responsibility to be good stewards of it. But even if you don’t subscribe to that, you know we have a moral responsibility to future generations to pass on this planet in a responsible, responsible way.”

House Majority Rep. Leader Steny Hoyer (D-MD) expressed his support for this bill upon its introduction: 

“While the President and Republicans continue to deny that our climate is changing and that human activity is responsible, Democrats refuse to sit on the sidelines.  Our bill would restore America’s standing in the global fight against climate change and address the threats to public health and our economy posed by rising sea levels, wildfires, and a greater frequency of deadly storms.”

House Republicans expressed opposition to this bill, arguing that Democrats avoided incorporating ideas from the other side of the aisle that could garner bipartisan support. As House Energy & Commerce Ranking Member Greg Walden (R-OR) described in the bill's committee report:

"Indeed, the Majority rejected every Minority amendment offered at markup, including amendments that sought to protect consumers from energy-price impacts, that sought to ensure that any planning include essential clean technologies like nuclear and hydropower, that sought to ensure the continued global emissions benefits of the nation’s natural gas exports, and that sought to ensure that the United States not bind itself to commitments that put it at a strategic disadvantage to China or Russia, which have gamely avoided economically harmful climate policies. As it is, we cannot support favorably reporting this bill to the House floor.”

This bill passed the House Energy and Commerce Committee by a 29-19 vote and the House Foreign Affairs Committee by a 24-16 vote with the support of 210 Democratic cosponsors. It has the support of Ceres, the Sierra Club, the League of Conservation Voters, and the Center for American Progress.


Of NoteThe 2015 Paris Agreement is a nonbinding agreement that aims to limit the increase in global temperature to well below 2 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels. In signing it, the Obama administration pledged to cut emissions to 26-28 percent below 2005 levels by 2025.

However, since the Paris accord wasn’t ratified by the Senate as a treaty, the president has unilateral authority to pull out of it. Thus, in June 2017, President Trump announced his intention to withdraw the U.S. from the Paris Agreement (which can’t formally happen until 2020), arguing that it threatens the economic prosperity of the U.S.:

"The Paris Accord would undermine our economy, hamstring our workers, weaken our sovereignty, impose unacceptable legal risks, and put us at permanent disadvantage to the other countries of the world."

Rep. Castor’s office notes that over 2,000 businesses and investors, 280 cities and counties, and 10 states have independently pledged to meet the U.S. commitment under the Paris climate agreement. As of March 27, 2019, “We Are Still In,” a coalition co-founded by Ceres and several partner organizations in the weeks following the Trump administration’s announcement of its intention to leave the Paris climate agreement, boasts 3,600 signatories, including governors, mayors, tribes, businesses, investors, faith organizations, colleges and universities, and represents over half of all Americans and $6.2 trillion of the U.S. economy.

Climate experts have said that the Paris Agreement doesn’t go far enough to mitigate global warming’s effects — they argue that far more dramatic action is needed from the U.S. and other nations.


Media:

Summary by Lorelei Yang

(Photo Credit: iStockphoto.com / baona)

AKA

Climate Action Now Act

Official Title

To direct the President to develop a plan for the United States to meet its nationally determined contribution under the Paris Agreement, and for other purposes.

    The US has an obligation as a global citizen and as a significant carbon emitter to participate in the effort to combat climate change. Moreover, participating allows us to share not only the challenges, but also the benefits of these efforts, as well as providing us a seat at the table in discussion and development of such efforts.
    Like (218)
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    America should absolutely leave the Paris Agreement. The primary polluters are China and India. Much American business is incentivized on its own to be conscientious environmentally. The Paris agreement was not made out of consideration to the American taxpayer.
    Like (103)
    Follow
    Share
    For so many reasons it is important for us to rejoin the Paris Agreement. We have an obligation to the Planet to clean up our act. We must act as a model for hesitant countries to invest in clean renewable resources. We have a need to provide a reliable partner to those who have not pulled out for the safety and health of all our citizens while reestablishing cordial diplomatic relationships with former allies. Normalization of the Climate would most likely stem the tide of Climate Crisis refugees allowing them to remain in place and lead sustainable lives. We need to reestablish our country’s reputation for being a World Leader in science and innovation, rather than maintaining our idiotic stance on climate crisis denial. We are running out of time to do the correct responsible things to improve our environment for our survival and our children’s futures. Get back in and let’s lead the way to the planets salvation.
    Like (110)
    Follow
    Share
    The United States need to show the world that we are a leader in combating threats common to all of humanity. That includes things like nuclear proliferation, dictatorships, basic human rights, and climate change. By staying in the Paris climate accord we will be helping ourselves avoid billions in damage and thousands of American deaths due worsening to severe weather, including more and stronger tornados and hurricanes, frequent flooding and polarizing droughts. If we do not do commit our country to combatting it our allies will begin to see the US - not just as a weakened power and influence, but also a problem that they will have to combat. Americans abroad will be thought of as dirty polluters and could be treated poorly even in countries where we now enjoy favorable opinion and are allowed to travel to safely. All of this is more important than the upfront cost of shifting away from fossil fuels.
    Like (101)
    Follow
    Share
    YES ! STAY IN PARIS TALKS ! SUPPORT GREEN NEW DEAL ! WE HAVE ONLY A 5% CHANCE OF KEEPING THE PLANET UNDER 2 C DEGREES AS IT IS ! THANKS TO MORBIDLY STUPID AND MORBIDLY GREEDY IDIOTS THAT HAVE BEEN RUNNING THIS COUNTRY AND WORLD SINCE WE ALL FIRST LEARNED THAT WE WOULD COMMIT MASS SUICIDE IF WE CONTINUED TO ABUSE OUR ONLY VIABLE SPACESHIP EARTH ! THE REPUBLICANS AND THEIR CLIMATE CHANGE DENIALS STARTING WITH REAGAN HAVE DESTROYED OUR CHANCES FOR THRIVING ON THIS PLANET AND NOW THEY WANT TO RUN AWAY INTO SPACE ! A PLAGUE ON ALL THEIR FAMILIES !
    Like (47)
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    Hell no. Why should the USA commit economic suicide and also support a multitude of socialist and communist countries. Only a fool would sign up for an agreement like that.
    Like (38)
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    If we want a world to live in we better do something soon to curb our greenhouse emissions. Trump should never have pulled us out of the agreement in the first place, but he is so stupid that he doesn't think beyond his penis.
    Like (38)
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    Climate change is real and happening now. We need to do everything possible to slow and correct the problems. All countries need to work together to make positive changes.
    Like (35)
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    It may not be enough but it’s a start. The longer we wait the worse the consequences. If someone does not believe in climate change they need to open their eyes and look at what’s happening around the world.
    Like (33)
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    The time to act was three decades ago, at least.
    Like (32)
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    It is Vital to be part of a Global initiative to decrease global warming by cutting carbon emissions. We should be leaders in Science for this very important topic
    Like (26)
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    The Paris Agreement is a farce. There is no compliance mechanism. Do not rejoin it. Do our own thing.
    Like (26)
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    Even a child understands that you cannot destroy the place where you live and continue to live there. Climate change is hard to get consensus and action on no matter what the political implications, so supporting the Paris Accord, despite its imperfections, is a useful way for our country to to get into the action and start cleaning up our planet.
    Like (25)
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    We’re already out. Decision already made and announced by President Trump. Why are they wasting time and money rehashing it? Let it go. Climate change is a hoax!
    Like (22)
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    Yes, we need to stay in this agreement, no matter what the moron in the White House does or says. He's only thinking about himself and causing more and more problems with our allies. How this moron got elected is beyond me, he doesn't give a rat's ass about anyone except himself. LET'S MAKE SURE HE DOESN'T GET A 2ND TERM IN OFFICE.
    Like (21)
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    Little Deranged Donny is denying climate change while building a sea wall around his Scottish Golf Club. We have a cancer within & close to the Presidency that's growing.
    Like (21)
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    The Paris Climate Boondoggle was never submitted to the Senate for ratification on some obscure technical grounds. It was MEANT to be a "treaty" and deserved that ratification (which I believe it would not have achieved). Instead, the Obama administration added insult to injury by submitting it to the UN, which is the primary sponsor of the delusion that mankind's CO2 emissions are having an outsized impact on the climate. Our adopting this "agreement" which has been unmet by almost all the signatories anyway (the US's declines in CO2 emissions are relatively rare among those nations, and China and India's increased emissions make whatever the US does irrelevant anyway) deserves an ignominious end. And soon.
    Like (21)
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    I guess that All or most republicans are alternative fact alternate universe people. Don’t you realize that climate change does not discriminate although it does affect the impoverished more than the well to do. Is that where your Hope lies. You sound like Hitler reborn but of course to you that isn’t a cutdown.
    Like (20)
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    I would like to make A suggestion I think everyone should read the ends of the world by Peter Brannen. It’s really not a book about climate change at all it’s a book about the history of the earth. In the short and long of the story is it over a period of hundreds of millions of years carbon buildup in the atmosphere brought down forms of life that had been living under his millions of years. From the crustaceous period to the end of the dinosaurs. And it all took hundreds of millions of years naturally. But we are doing as a shortcut we are releasing as much carbon end of the year possibly can in the form of CO2. All the oil and all the trees the took hundreds of million years form carbon coal and oil are now being pumped in the atmosphere at a crazy rate. The book may be out of print look for it on eBay, I will probably scare you with that but hopefully change your outlook.
    Like (20)
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    We are already OUT and we should stay OUT. I wish people would actually have the INTELLIGENCE to understand REAL SCIENCE. We need CO2. Carbon Dioxide is an ESSENTIAL part of our LIFE. TREES, Plants, Grass, and even for you Leftist marijuana toking people out there your plants need Carbon Dioxide also. They breathe it in and exhale Oxygen. Wow what a program that is. And as for GLOBAL WARMING that comes naturally also. It’s cyclical. And that means it happens every few THOUSAND YEARS. And that’s been proven SCIENTIFICALLY.
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