President Trump is withdrawing the U.S. from the Paris Climate Accord, promising that the move will create more jobs for Americans.
But most American business leaders disagree.
Elon Musk, CEO of Tesla, joined a number of top business executives including Tim Cook, Apple CEO, Dow Chemical CEO Andrew Liveris, JPMorgan Chase & Co.’s Jamie Dimon, Lloyd Blankfein of Goldman Sachs, and GE’s Jeffrey Immelt to urge the president to remain in the climate agreement.
Some 25 top U.S. companies even took out a full-page ad in the New York Times and Wall Street Journal, arguing that the U.S. should stay in the Paris agreement because it will ultimately generate jobs and drive economic growth.
Despite their pleas, the U.S. is out.
The Paris Climate Accord was signed by 195 countries in an effort to get everyone in the world community to do their part to protect the environment and stop climate change.
Under the accord, the U.S. had pledged to cut its greenhouse gas emissions to 28% below 2005 levels by 2025 and commit up to $3 billion in aid for poorer countries by 2020.
Today, the United States joins Syria and Nicaragua as the only three countries that oppose the agreement.
Executives warned that withdrawing from the agreement would hurt American manufacturing, cost Americans jobs and put the U.S. at a disadvantage in developing and deploying clean-energy technology.
In America’s absence, they argued, the market opportunity will default to China, who is currently the world’s biggest polluter.
Natural gas powerhouses like Exxon Mobile, Royal Dutch Shell and BP also supported U.S. involvement in the Paris agreement, arguing that their business would benefit from greater worldwide demand for energy sources like natural gas and renewable power.
Predictably, coal producers and mining companies stood in opposition to the Paris agreement.
Following Trump’s announcement, Musk stopped participation in two White House business advisory councils – Trump’s economic advisory board and his manufacturing jobs initiative council. Disney CEO Bob Iger has also resigned from the president’s council in the wake of the Paris decision.