SpaceX founder Elon Musk has made good on his promise and has stepped down from his position on the White House advisory council, in protest of Trump’s decision to pull America out of the Paris climate deal.
Elon Musk tweeted June 2, announcing his decision, following it up with “Climate change is real. Leaving Paris is not good for America or the world.”
The tech billionaire reportedly made all efforts to persuade Trump away from his decision to withdraw the US from the Paris climate deal on Wednesday, lobbying him not to drop the agreement.
Musk, over the last few months, received backlash for joining the Trump advisory councils. However, Musk argued that it is vital to remain an integral part of the debate to help address and shape discourse.
Disney’s Robert Iger also announced his decision to step down from the council, citing Trump’s decision on the Paris climate deal.
As a matter of principle, I’ve resigned from the President’s Council over the #ParisAgreement withdrawal.
— Robert Iger (@RobertIger) June 1, 2017
Other members of the White House advisory council, including Sundar Pichai, the CEO of Google Inc also tweeted his displeasure over the decision. It followed after Google, along with two dozen other companies – Microsoft, Facebook, Apple, Tiffany & Co. and Adobe – addressed Trump in an open letter, urging him to keep the US in the climate accord.
Amazon also pushed back at Trump’s decision, maintaining their full support for the climate agreement and the necessity to combat climate change together.
Richard Branson accused Trump of forcing America to abandon “its duty” on Bloomberg Television.
Musk has been an outspoken proponent of clean energy. His company Tesla produces both electric cars and solar panels with high-capacity batteries. Musk has claimed that as an advisory council member of the White House councils he did all he could, but has pulled out on a “matter of principle.”
The responses from business-focused companies have also contradicted Trump’s claim to save domestic United States jobs. They claim that such a move will leave negative trade implications and will make it difficult to remain competitive, hurting their potential to create future jobs. Sustainability and American leadership were some of the points they argued.
Even big energy players have frowned on Trump’s decision. Fossil fuel giant ExxonMobil called on Trump in a May 9 letter via the Financial Times, pleading with the US president to keep the United States in the Paris climate deal. ExxonMobil CEO Darren Woods argued the need for the United States to remain “at the negotiating table to ensure a level playing field.”
Monsanto and Starbucks also supported the Paris climate agreement.
The Paris Climate Agreement was signed in 2015 by 195 nations around the world, pledging their allegiance to lower their own emissions. The agreement eventuated in an attempt to lower global temperatures by 2 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels for this century.
Obama pledged at the time to lower greenhouse gas emissions in 2025 by 25 to 26 percent below 2005 levels.
The United States is the world’s second largest carbon emissions emitter.
On May 31, the United Nations tweeted that “Climate change is undeniable, climate action is unstoppable.”
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