In Tuesday morning's New York Times, alongside damaging front page coverage of Sally Yates' testimony, Donald Trump will have been greeted with a full page ad urging him not to abandon the groundbreaking Paris Agreement. It's worth taking a look at the list of signatories:
Adobe - Apple - Blue Shield and Blue Cross of Massachusetts - Danfoss - Dignity Health - Facebook - Gap, Inc. - Google - Hewlett Packard - Ingersoll Rand - Intel - Johnson Controls - Levi Strauss - Mars - Microsoft - Morgan Stanley - National Grid - PG & E Corporation - Royal DSM - Salesforce - Schneider Electric - Tiffany & Company - Unilever - VF Corporation
That's a pretty impressive list of—to use Trumpian terminology—"job creators." It would seem that a large swathe of the economy is firmly behind concerted, predictable and sustained efforts to curb emissions and move our economy into the 21st Century. (200+ institutional investors worth $15 trillion are of a similar mindset too.)Alongside corporate pressure, it would appear that Trump has also heard from both incoming French President Emmanuel Macron, and from China's President Xi Jinping, about both their determination to defend the agreement, and the fact that the US would suffer serious diplomatic consequences for reneging on its participation in a deal that includes every country except Syria and Nicaragua.
And yet, the decision is down to the wire and many pundits are suggesting the "leave" camp has the upper hand. Want to have your say? National Resources Defense Council is asking folks to call the White House (202-456-1111) and weigh in on why leaving Paris would leave the United States isolated as the rest of the world moves toward a low carbon economy.
Whatever happens, though, the depth and breadth of opposition to leaving the Paris Agreement suggests the momentum has fundamentally shifted. Even if the United States government decides to leave, a large chunk of the country will plough on regardless, pushing change at the individual, household, local, regional, corporate, international and—where possible—national level too.
The destination is set. It's just a question of who wants to lead and who wants to get left behind.