Former French president Sarkozy says Europe should impose carbon tax on US if Trump pulls out of Paris Pact

More than 100 countries in the world have already ratified the Paris Pact, pledging to reduce emissions and keep climate change to less than 2 degrees Celsius over pre-industrial levels. But president-elect Trump has been very vocal about how he doesn’t believe in climate change and he is now reportedly trying to back away from the pact.

“Donald Trump has said – we’ll see if he keeps this promise – that he won’t respect the conclusions of the Paris climate agreement,” Sarkozy, who is a French presidential candidate told the TF1 television channel on Sunday.

Current US president Barack Obama has been a great supporter of the Paris agreement, constantly pushing for sustainable measures. But Donald Trump has called global warming a hoax and has promised to quit the Paris Agreement. Under these circumstances, Sarkozy believes we should impose a carbon tax on the United States. Kind of like how Trump wants to build a wall, but instead of a physical wall stopping Mexicans, this would be an economic wall fighting climate change.

“Well, I will demand that Europe put in place a carbon tax at its border, a tax of 1-3 per cent, for all products coming from the United States, if the United States doesn’t apply environmental rules that we are imposing on our companies,” he added.

Sarkozy was president in France and he is running again. Image credits: Guillaume Paumier.

Trump’s election has caused uproar in the scientific world and he has repeatedly taken anti-science positions, causing extreme worry at the UN summit in Marrakech, Morocco, where world leaders are discussing ways through which emissions could be kept to a minimum.

“Trump will be the first anti-science president we have ever had,” says Michael Lubell, director of public affairs for the American Physical Society in Washington DC. “The consequences are going to be very, very severe.”

As a global leader in innovation and one of the planet’s biggest carbon emitters and polluters, the US has a responsibility to clean up its act and ensure that at the very least, it is taking concrete steps to reduce its negative impact. But as Sarkozy points out, pretty much the only way to make sure that a country is holding up its end of the deal is a carbon tax.

It’s also interesting that he proposed this, considering Sarkozy himself is often labeled as a climate skeptic.

“Climate has been changing for four billion years,” the former president told a panel of business leaders in September, the weekly Marianne reported. “Sahara has become a desert, it isn’t because of industry. You need to be as arrogant as men are to believe we changed the climate.”

But beyond the potential hypocrisy in his statement, he does have a valid point, echoing reasoning that’s popular in many parts of the developed world. We need leaders that address global concerns and have the ability to grasp the greater picture on vital issues such as climate change. The science is in, it’s time for politics to act.

6 thoughts on “Former French president Sarkozy says Europe should impose carbon tax on US if Trump pulls out of Paris Pact

  1. John Smith

    The rise of Trump and Sarkozy, the UKIP turn of the Tory Party and the dead-end protectionism of left social democracy – as in the calls from the UK Labour Party for 'British' steel jobs to be protected at the expense of Chinese steel workers – are sure signs that deepening global economic crisis is prompting a return to beggar-thy-neighbour trade wars between rival capitalist countries – the road to fascism and World War 3, as history has proven on two occasions in the last century. 'Climate change' is a euphemism for 'the capitalist destruction of nature' – let's call things by their real names! To stop climate change we need system change, and the very last thing we need is sensible and sincere people like Mihai calling for more leaders like the notorious racist, hypocrital crook Nicolas Sarkozy!

  2. Pingback: World should impose carbon tax on USA if Trump pulls out of Paris Pact – teawithout

  3. Brian

    Tariffs should be based on environmental damage and workers rights of the source countries. TPP is the opposite of that. We need a fossils fine/tax. We need pollution penalties. Tariffs usually do more harm than good, as history has shown, and why the idea of "free" trade is so poplar. But free trade is even worse, since it's a global race to the bottom, and the people are forced into austerity. Fair trade is what we need.

    Right now the US gov and many other govs ARE the problem because they are giving fossils 5.3T$ in breaks per year, not even including the wars. The US leads in the use of fossils as a geopolitical weapon. This may have made sense once, but now with solar, wind and renewables available cheaper, it's madness.
    We don't know what Trump will do: he was lying and pandering to win. I'm glad to see him backpedal on fossils climate change. The renewable lobbyists need to push hard. Trump is probably for sale to the highest bidders, just like Hillary and Obama.
    Unfortunately fossils have so much more money for propaganda and buying influence, that it's going to be tough. They have programmed million of people to believe fossils are not running out and don't cause climate change, that renewable are an expensive hoax. The programming is now so good, no amounts of facts seem to break it. These people will never wake up. The good news is, they are the minority. even 80% of GOP and conservative want more solar and wind and less fossils and nuclear. Now that's it's cheaper, I lot more of them will join in. We need to encourage those that can change, and ignore and move off stage, those that cannot.

  4. Pingback: Nicolas Sarkozy calls for a carbon tax on the US if Trump pulls out of the Paris climate agreement – Live Long LED

  5. SenzibleG

    One thing for certain is that the very same voters in the US who made this monster will pay the steepest price for their big blunder. The only question is who will they blame this time? We know they are incapable of blaming the true culprit, themselves. The race to the bottom happens when honesty and ethics have vanished from private and public life.

  6. Brandon Sheffield

    Wow this article acts like there has been no 20 year pause in global warming. Scientists are still scratching their heads trying to figure out how to manipulate their models again to show where the "warming" went.
    Meanwhile global CO2 has paused since it reached 400ppm. BTW that's only .0000000004 of the total atmosphere (maybe off on the zeroes by one or two).

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