Withdraw from the Paris Climate Change Agreement

Current Status: Fulfilled

As of

@realDonaldTrump tweet, November 2012:

@realDonaldTrump tweet, January 2014:

Trump commenting on Hillary Clinton's climate change action plan: "You can't do what you're looking to do with $20 trillion in debt."


In November 2016, Trump conceded that there is "some connectivity" between human activity and climate change and wavered on whether he would pull the United States out of the Paris Agreement.

However, if "personnel is policy" then Trump's cabinet picks send a clear message. In November 2016 he appointed Myron Ebell - a vocal denier of climate change science - to his transition team as EPA adviser, and soon after appointed Scott Pruitt to head the EPA  and U.S. Representative Cathy McMorris Rodgers to head the Department of the Interior (the DOI post has since been offered to Representative Ryan Zinke of Montana) who is a vocal skeptic on climate change and a proponent of the fossil fuel industry. 

In December 2016, the Trump transition team took the unprecedented action of petitioning the Department of Energy to list employees and contractors who attended United Nations climate meetings, along with those who helped develop the Obama administration’s social cost of carbon metrics, used to estimate and justify the climate benefits of new rules.  This move seems to indicate a likely purge or other action to clear the government of any trace of pro-climate change employees.

Trump advisers have scheduled a meeting to review the administration's options with respect to the Paris agreement. (The planned meeting was abruptly cancelled soon after the announcement.)  Meanwhile, the administration's ongoing policy review prevented the G7 from formulating a joint declaration of support for the Paris accords.  

Soon after, Energy Secretary Rick Perry said at a Bloomberg New Energy Finance event that he would not advise leaving the accord, and instead would counsel President Trump to "renegotiate" the country's participation. The same week, a draft State Department memo indicated that the US has little reason to leave the accord. These developments highlighted a split in the administration over whether to leave or not.

Both environmental groups and energy companies stated their preference for the US to remain in the agreement. If the U.S. does fully withdraw from the agreement, the remaining members will continue on with the process, with China and Germany likely taking the leadership role.

On June 1st, 2017, Trump announced the administration's intent to withdraw from the accord, joining Syria and Nicaragua as the only nations on earth that are not part of the agreement. His announcement initiated a legal process that is expected to take four years and would not prevent a future administration from rejoining the accord.

Despite the fact that the US has not fully, legally exited the agreement and that completion of the process will take longer than Trump's first term in office, we are calling this promise fulfilled since it is expected that the administration will not pursue any policies that would support the agreement, effectively gutting it.