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  • 06.02.17

Five crucial things Trump got wrong in his Paris accord farewell speech

Trump’s announcement on Thursday that the U.S. would exit the UN Paris agreement included a number of significant errors, according to the nonprofit, nonpartisan website FactCheck.org.

• Trump said the U.S. would be exposed to “massive legal liability if we stay in” the Paris agreement. But there is no liability mechanism in the Paris agreement. International environmental law experts tell us that pulling out of the agreement won’t reduce U.S. exposure to liability claims and, in fact, may increase it.
• Trump called China and India the “world’s leading polluters,” referring to carbon emissions. That’s not accurate. China and the U.S. were the top emitters per kiloton in 2015.
• The president also falsely said “nobody even knows where the money [in the Green Climate Fund] is going to.” The fund’s website outlines all of the projects that have been funded.
• Trump said the agreement would cost “close to $3 trillion in lost GDP.” That’s one estimate from a report for a business-funded group that found a much smaller impact under a different scenario. Yet another analysis said the impact of meeting the emissions targets would be “modest.”
• Trump again took credit for job gains, saying the economy has added more than a million private sector jobs since his election. That’s true, but only 493,000 of them were added since he took office.

You can read the whole fact-check of Trump’s address here.

It’s still not clear whether or not Trump thinks that humans have an impact on the climate. At today’s White House press briefing, Environmental Protection Agency administrator Scott Pruitt said that he and Trump did not talk about his views on the science during discussions about the Paris decisionAP