Trump’s climate claims vs. the facts – Orange County Register

By CALVIN WOODWARD and JIM DRINKARD

WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump’s announcement that the U.S. will leave the Paris climate accord came with a blast of hot air.

Here’s a reality check on some statements by Trump and his administration over the past week on global warming, jobs and other matters:

TRUMP: “The cost to the economy at this time would be close to $3 trillion in lost GDP and 6.5 million industrial jobs, while households would have 7,000 less income, and in many cases, much worse than that.” — Rose Garden ceremony Thursday announcing U.S. withdrawal from the worldwide agreement to curb emissions responsible for global warming. GDP is the gross domestic product, the broadest gauge of the economy.

THE FACTS: His claim is based on a study paid for by two groups that have long opposed environmental regulation, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and the American Council for Capital Formation. It makes worst-case assumptions that may inflate the cost of meeting U.S. targets under the Paris accord while largely ignoring the economic benefits to U.S. businesses from building and operating renewable energy projects.

Both groups behind the study get financial backing from those who profit from the continued burning of fossil fuels. The latter group has received money from foundations controlled by the Koch brothers, whose company owns refineries and more than 4,000 miles of oil and gas pipelines.

Academic studies have found that increased environmental regulation doesn’t actually have much impact on employment. Jobs lost at polluting companies tend to be offset by new jobs in green technology.
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TRUMP: “I was elected to represent the citizens of Pittsburgh, not Paris.” — Rose Garden ceremony.

THE FACTS: That may be so, but Allegheny County, which includes Pittsburgh, is not Trump country. It voted overwhelmingly for Democrat Hillary Clinton in November, favoring her by a margin of 56 percent to Trump’s 40 percent. The city has a climate action plan committing to boost the use of renewable energy.

Pittsburgh Mayor Bill Peduto, a Democrat, has been an outspoken supporter of the Paris accord, and tweeted after Trump’s announcement that “as the Mayor of Pittsburgh, I can assure you that we will follow the guidelines of the Paris Agreement for our people, our economy & future.”
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TRUMP: Claims “absolutely tremendous economic progress since Election Day,” adding “more than a million private-sector jobs.” — Rose Garden ceremony.

THE FACTS: The number is about right, but it in no way counts as “absolutely tremendous economic progress.” Private-sector job creation from October through April (171,000 private-sector jobs a month) actually lags just slightly behind the pace of job creation for the previous six months (172,000), which came under President Barack Obama. On Friday the government announced a lower figure for jobs added last month — 138,000.

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TRUMP: “Our attacks on terrorism are greatly…

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