Rabat – The recent election of Donald Trump has cast a shadow of uncertainty over the proceedings in Marrakech at COP22. Trump is a noted climate change denier, and his impending administration calls into question US participation in the agreement made last year in Paris at COP21. During his campaign, Trump pledged to withdraw the US from the treaty.
The BBC reports that French president Francois Hollande has called on Trump to respect the commitments made under the Paris Climate Agreement, calling the pact irreversible in “law and in fact.”
COP22 was intended to be a celebration of the deal reached in Paris last year; however, many heads of state spent the first session of CMA1 discussing the future involvement of the US instead of working out the logistics of making the Paris Climate Agreement operational.
UN secretary general Ban Ki-moon reassured the assembly that after speaking to Trump on the phone, he believed that the promise to withdraw from the Paris agreement was simply campaign rhetoric.
Ban emphasized the current feeling of global unity surrounding climate change, calling it “unstoppable” and voiced his hope that Trump “will really hear and understand the seriousness and urgency of addressing climate change.”
He went on to say, “as a very successful business person in the past, I believe that he understands that there are market forces at work on this issue,” arguing that Trump’s business background means that he will recognize the economic importance of cutting carbon and investing in renewable resources.
Hollande portrayed France as a leader moving forward, saying that the dialogue with the Trump would progress with “respect but with demands and determination on behalf of the 100 states that have ratified the Paris Agreement.”
Hollande’s hope is that in a world fraught by terrorism, poverty, and other major threats, the fight against climate change will be a point of unity within the international community.