Post editorial: A chance on climate change

Wednesday, 15 November 2017, 12:45:02 AM. And then there was one. The Associated Press reports that, at a U.N. climate conference in Bonn, Germany, last week, Syrian representatives said their country will join the Paris climate agreement. That means every country on the planet has embraced...
And then there was one. The Associated Press reports that, at a U.N. climate conference in Bonn, Germany, last week, Syrian representatives said their country will join the Paris climate agreement. That means every country on the planet has embraced the pact. Except one. The United States, a signatory, recently declared that it will repudiate the agreement. Once a world leader helping to corral other nations to solve common problems, the United States has become a drag on the global response to the largest environmental threat of this century. It is now alone in its rejection of Paris. President Donald Trump has played down the importance of climate change. Last year he told the Post that the nation simply faces much graver threats. He is wrong. Even if scientists’ warnings turn out to have been too dire, climate change still poses massive risks to human society, and the world must respond. A recent study underscored this point. The study, published in Nature Geoscience, suggests that the world may have not missed its chance to avoid dangerous climate change after all. A team of European researchers recalculated the planet’s carbon budget – that is, the amount of carbon dioxide that humans can emit going forward before risking dangerous temperature increases. They found that humanity might be able to release more than previously thought and that restraining global temperature rise to 1.5 degrees Celsius, a goal many presumed was unreachable, remains possible. Yet, even if...Read more
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