Trump to Paris & World: It’s Not You, It’s US. Only US. Ever.

Well friends, it’s been quite a ride. Yesterday, Donald Trump officially announced his decision to pull the U.S. out of the Paris Agreement.

There is a lot of news and information to digest this morning. So we’ve picked out a few you should read: here is a debunking of Trump’s comments yesterday, here is the documentation of the millions of dollars fossil fuel companies have given the senators who pushed Trump to pull out of the Agreement and here is an explanation of why Trump really pulled out where literally every paragraph ends with a great kicker.

And then indulge us, please, for a moment. We’d like to get a little personal. (Well, third person plural, anyway.)

Like many others out there, we’ve dedicated a lot of time on the Paris Agreement. Years of work went into laying the groundwork for the international agreement — getting reporters familiar with the nuances of international diplomacy, working with scientists to quantify emission scenarios, helping grassroots groups and frontline communities tell their stories, and so much more. It’s been a core part of our work and our lives, for many years.

And now, it feels as if that was all for nothing. Cast aside by a con man who got conned.

Did we fail? Have we lost? Was our effort, the community’s, the scientists’, and the media’s efforts, all a waste?

Maybe it was.

But we tried. We poured our hearts, souls and brains into this work, day after day after day. So many long hours were spent connecting scientists and reporters together all over the world, so many weekends were spent responding to one baseless attack after another, and so many nights were spent trying not to think about the fact that if we don’t do our job correctly, the ONLY thing at stake is the long term suitability of our planet…

But unfortunately, there is little that could be done to stop fossil fuel companies from funding politicians to do their bidding. There’s little more we can do to convince Murdoch (and now Mercer) media to tell the truth about the climate, no matter how many times we point out their lies. And it takes more than a few years to undo the damage of decades of concerted efforts by the Koch brothers and others to politicize and delegitimize science and evidence in the eyes of conservatives, swayed by deceptively simple talking points.

So excuse us while we take some time to mourn the unraveling of what we’ve spent years building. We’re sure you’re also doing the same.

And while this is certainly a setback, it’s not the end of the line. The fight continues, as it always has and as it always will.

With that, we’ll leave you with a message we desperately need to hear, and one you probably could stand to hear as well: It’s not your fault.

It’s not your fault.


Today’s piece was written by Philip Newell and originally published here. Phil is on reddit at u/pnewell.