The Trump administration is so fearful of acknowledging the reality of climate change that White House negotiators are trying to erase all mention of it and the Paris Agreement from a multinational statement about the Arctic region, The Post reported last week.
In doing so, the Trump administration has demonstrated its cowardly denial that the region is warming two to three times faster than the rest of the planet, putting its own people in harm’s way and damaging relations with allies around the world.
This isn’t the first time this episode has played out. I bore witness to the administration’s self-inflicted embarrassment two years ago while working at the Interior Department. Then, as now, the leader of the free world stood thoroughly diminished while other nations and the people most affected by the climate crisis were forced to face the consequences.
The eight nations of the Arctic Council, established in 1996, take turns chairing the multinational forum, and every two years, as leadership changes, foreign ministers must sign a negotiated ministerial declaration reaffirming the work and ambitions of the council. Since Trump has entered office, that has meant Arctic nations must suffer through absurd negotiations with climate deniers in the White House. [Continue reading…]