The Paris Accord: What is it? And What Does it All Mean?

The Paris Accord: What is it? And What Does it All Mean?

At the heart of the desire to get America out of the Paris Agreement seems to be three things:

1. Nostalgia. The focus on coal, an energy source that is becoming uneconomical even in developing countries, and that employs very few people in America can’t have anything to do with anything except an imagined fondness for a world that probably never existed. These people are right that fossil fuels have been great for Americans and also for the world. I think the people who worked and fought to use fossil fuels to make people’s lives better did good things. I also think we need new paths and to retire old ones.

2. A push to have countries care only about their own interests. Climate change is the best example that this doesn’t work. And that’s very scary for people who are skeptical of globalism. It may seem to them awfully convenient that the people who want a more global society happened to find this disaster that can only be solved by a more global society.

Of course there are some that are purely economically motivated, but while those people are powerful, there aren’t many of them. But these are the things that really resonate with large numbers of people. And when you’re trying to defend your worldview, you’ll make some magnificent mental leaps to do it…like that every scientist ever is lying about how CO2 absorption works.

There are a couple Twitter threads that I really enjoyed on these topics. here they are.

Vi Hart:

Adam Conover:

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20 Responses

  1. Ellen Johnson says:

    Donald trump makes me sad more than angry

  2. Av J says:

    The Paris Accord: the one time Trump learns to pull out.

  3. Jillian Jennett says:

    Thank god for Hank Green

  4. holdmybeer says:

    ​if we get rid of coal, what will santa put in spicers christmas stocking? 🙁

  5. Kate H says:

    That orange man makes me very angry and I’m trying to get past that and just focus on what I can do to help us have a better future. It’s a daily struggle…

  6. A Rose With Thorns says:

    I am so glad Hank made a video on this, I knew I could trust him when it comes to the facts surrounding the environment and the agreement as it’s been really hard trying to understand and make sense of all of them when there are so many heated opinions around the topic. Thanks Hank!

  7. Keeping In Touch says:

    The sad thing is people who don’t want to believe in Climate Change will see this video as liberal bias… it’s fact.

  8. YAOES says:

    Breaking News: America taking away subsidies for Netflix, trying to bring back Blockbuster!

  9. Gabriel Belliøn says:

    And all of it started with Covfefe

  10. DecafKauffee says:

    The bit on WHY we need to give money to other countries is a hugely important piece most people would never think about. I’m glad you included it!

  11. JoKing says:

    But but but, this doesn’t agree with the things I thought were true, so I’m not going to listen to you and call this fake. There, much better for my fragile ego.

  12. Nick Byrd says:

    Trump’s decision about this is the opposite of “strong leadership”.

  13. Meg Novotny says:

    i’m only 17. i’m really, really sad that a) i cannot do anything about this. all i can do is try not not to get VERY upset listening to people say they “don’t believe in climate change” and b) older people aren’t doing more with their years of experience in engineering and science and politics and…. nothing is getting done. it’s my earth, too.

  14. NGXII says:

    Hey all, do you think that talking about climate change would be more effective and influential if we referred to what’s changing as Earth’s “habitability”, rather than just “the environment”? I think that the term “environment” already has deeply engrained and politicized connotations, so it’s just become something that gets tuned out.. what are your thoughts?

  15. Nahin Hossain says:

    Can someone please explain why the majority of Trump supporters think that the Paris deal is bad for the US economy? I’m not trying to start an argument here, I really am curious.

  16. Eileen Smileen says:

    It boggles mind as to how someone can just “not believe” in global warming! It’s not a belief it’s a reality!
    I wish Trump would pull his head out of his ass and fucking use it.

  17. First Person Plural says:

    Fundamentally, the issue at the heart of Trump’s decision is that he believes that it is impossible to work together. He, and many many others, believe that everyone is in it for themselves, and that any interaction between nations, or even between people, is a question of trying to succeed at the expense of the other. This is a flawed worldview, not backed up by science of how people actually think, and a sad one, but it is a persistent. Trump, and those many many republicans who agree with him on this (in terms of climate change, his position is possibly the most standard republican position he has) genuinely think the US is getting ripped off, because they cannot understand that the world can work together, only against one another.

    Paris isn’t perfect, as Hank said Paris isn’t binding, but Paris was an agreement between nations that said that we can all work together for the betterment of humanity. The US may actually meet it’s Paris target, or at least continue to reduce emissions, but by pulling out, Trump declares that nations cannot work together, that cooperation is weak, and that is truly depressing

  18. Miranda Finn says:

    I’m heartbroken over this. It was an extremely selfish and uneducated decision. I’m glad many other countries are still standing behind the agreement, however. Better than the alternative.

  19. Diogo Almeida says:

    America didn’t take a step backwards just now. They did it back in November!

  20. SheistyProductions says:

    Even if climate change isn’t real, what is the harm in using renewable energy and respecting the planet?

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