In 2021, the year after Donald Trump left the white house, the USA emitted roughly 13.49% of the world emissions. To put that in context, it is over twice the emissions from the 27 members of the EU and the UK combined (this is despite the USA having a population of 330 million vs almost 500 million across these 28 countries). So, how could Donald Trump make that worse?
Well, in the first Trump term, he was largely finding his way, and by shunning anyone with experience, it took quite some time. This will not be the case during a second time.
So what has happened since he left the white house, and what can he do.
During the last 4 years, major climate legislation did a number of things. These include reversing a move to end a crackdown on governmental climate scientists (because you dont want expert advisors working for the government?) a frenzy of oil and gas drilling permets, and making sure that the Paris climate accords were not only dead, but buried.
So what is expected of Donald Trumps second term if he gets in?
Just to start:
- Driving forwards on fossil fuel production (as electric cars and heat pumps make these cheaper and far more efficient)
- Side-lining mainstream climate scientists
- Undoing and eliminating any rules about reducing planet-heating gases including carbon-dioxide and methane among others.
He is also likely to undo all the good moves that have occurred under president Biden (perhaps of highest priority, getting rid of the Inflation reduction act, which cost 370 billion dollars and was there to support clean energy and electric cars – without a single republican vote, and looked on as the biggest defeat republicans have had.
The American first Policy Institute (pro trump) critisized Bidens “apocalyptic green fantasies” and said “Our nation needs a level regulatory playing field for all forms of energy to compete, Achieving this level playing field will require the repeal of the energy and environment provisions withint the Inflation Reduction Act”. The act has already been gutted by the house, which is currently controlled by the Republicans (this as republicans continue to turn up for ribbon cutting occasions paid for by the act in question). Thankfully, though, these projects are so popular, it would appear impossible to fully get rid of them.
The stupidity of this move – aiming to undo what little progress has been made, should mean Trump being elected would be impossible, though whether it will is another matter. Global warming will hit America hard, furthermore, Americans could each save thousands through taking on these new ideas.
It is also not true that there is a war on oil and gas production, with record levels reached under Biden last year.
It would be a clear shot in the foot, and would likely lead to the USA returning to being a Pariah on the world stage. Whether the American population will be able to hear and understand this is a different question.