SOCAN reacts to withdrawal from climate agreement

Medford, Ore. — Southern Oregon Climate Action Now says climate change is the greatest threat facing humanity and thinks pulling out of the Paris climate accord poses a severe threat to future generations.

“The United States will withdraw from the Paris climate accord,” announced President Trump Thursday.

The United States is backing out of a deal in which the U.S. pledged to reduce greenhouse gas emissions 26 percent by 2025.

“In order to fulfill my solemn duty to protect America and its citizens,” President Trump said.

President Trump says he doesn’t think the current agreement is fair, but he’s willing to negotiate a new deal.

“On terms that are fair to the United States, it’s businesses, it’s workers, it’s businesses it’s taxpayers,” President Trump said.

Co-Facilitator Alan Journet of Southern Oregon Climate Action Now says backing out the Paris agreement is a big mistake.

“It’s amazing and it’s blindness,” asserted Journet. “We know 97 percent of climate scientists – and this has been true for over a decade – agree that the planet is warming and human contributions are part of the problem,” Journet said.

Journet says Southern Oregon is especially at risk because we are dependent on tourism and believes it’s the natural beauty that attracts others here.

He says ignoring climate change could result in our famous forests and waterways being compromised.

“If we do not address climate change, it’s difficult to imagine that by the end of the century that our forests here will be anything like the way they are,” Journet said.

Journet says what people can do now is contact elected officials to address the problem.

U.S. Senators Jeff Merkley and Ron Wyden have both said leaving the Paris agreement would not only hurt the environment, but the economic security and leadership of the United States. U.S. Representative Greg Walden has yet to comment on the decision.

As for the governors in California and Oregon, both say they will continue fighting climate change.

The process to leave the accord won’t start for a few years. Once the U.S. is out, it will join Syria and Nicaragua as the only countries not part of the accord.

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