Today at United Nations Headquarters in New York City, Secretary of State John Kerry and representatives of over 130 nations will sign the Framework Convention on Climate Change agreement that was negotiated in Paris last December.
According to President Obama, this “historic agreement” will “hold every country accountable” if they fail to meet its carbon emission targets.
The White House has also acknowledged that the agreement contains “legally binding” provisions designed to create a “long-term framework” that will force the United States and signatory countries to reduce carbon emissions for decades to come.
Despite these facts, President Obama has already announced he will not submit the Paris Climate Agreement to the Senate for advice and consent. Instead, the White House claims the signature environmental achievement of the president’s tenure is just an “international agreement” not meriting Senate attention.
If the stakes weren’t so high, this claim would be laughable on its face.
Not only was this agreement’s predecessor, the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, submitted to the Senate and approved as a treaty, but when the Senate ratified that treaty, the Foreign Relations Committee specifically reported that any future emissions targets agreed to through the Convention “would have to be submitted to the Senate for its advice and consent.”
President Obama has chosen to ignore this directive.