Anti-Science Demagogue

Travel & Environment Desk
Anti-Science Demagogue
Anti-Science Demagogue

Donald Trump formally declared his candidacy for president in June 2015, which is arguably the most hateful, insult-laden announcement in the history of US presidential elections. In fact, his speech was so ludicrous that political pundits suggested that Trump’s announcement was nothing but a publicity stunt.

What made his success even more baffling was that his popularity kept rising the more offensive and absurd he got with his comments, to the point that some started wondering if Trump was just trying to see how far he could go before his supporters would draw a line.

Thirteen months have passed since Trump announced his candidacy, and now he is officially going up against Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton for the big prize, that is the White House.

The unprecedented climb of the quintessential demagogue, Trump, up the political ladder, which came at the expense of career politicians, means he at least has a shot at winning the elections.

From an environmental standpoint, Trump would be a chaotic president whose anti-science rhetoric, which includes cutting funding for the Environmental Protection Agency, will have major impacts on the US and the world, especially the Middle East.

  Chinese Hoax

A standard belief in the Republican camp has always been that climate change is a myth, and Trump subscribes to it.

He once said in 2012 that global warming “was created by and for the Chinese in order to make US manufacturing non-competitive”, before backpedaling and claiming that it was a joke—four years later. If only it were funny.

Latest data show that China’s large investments in clean energy are paying off and are putting the most-populous country on track to meet its carbon emission cuts.

In December, a vast majority of countries convened in Paris to sign a landmark deal that would see the world reduce its carbon emissions and limit the planet’s warming to under-2° C by 2100. The deal will go into effect once 55 countries accounting for 55% of the world’s carbon emissions ratify the deal.

Trump has even promised to renegotiate the deal if he becomes president, a challenging goal given the number of countries involved in the agreement.

As the second highest emitter of carbon dioxide and one of the world’s largest economies, the United States’ compliance with the agreement is paramount to its success, especially since the US is expected to make a substantial contribution toward the United Nations’ goal of raising $100 billion every year until 2020 to help poorer nations adapt to the effects of climate change.

Trump is highly unlikely to remain committed to the agreement, seeing how he believes China invented climate change to trick the US into reducing its industrial activities.

This lack of commitment to mitigating global warming would be bad news for the world, especially the Middle East and North Africa region, which according to researchers will become “uninhabitable” unless the planet’s warming is capped at under-2° C by the end of the century.

This will result in a mass exodus and fuel uncontrollable migration. If you think the current migration crisis is bad, imagine what it would be like if the entire region was forced to evacuate.

The Trump presidency would not make the planet more hospitable for anyone: not the Americans, and certainly not the inhabitants of the Middle East.

As a hotheaded and inexperienced leader with access to a massive nuclear arsenal, Trump would push the region into a chaos the kind of which this generation has not seen and whose effects will linger long after we’re gone.

To avoid any confusion, this piece is in no way an endorsement of Hillary Clinton, but at least with the former secretary of state we know what we’re getting—better the devil you know.