Donald Trump's Climate Policy Reading the Texts, Subtexts and Tea Leaves


To 16.3.2017 klo 9:00-10:30
the Finnish Institute of International Affairs
Kruunuvuorenkatu 4, 2nd floor, Helsinki

Under President Barack Obama, the United States was widely considered a progressive climate actor. An extensive portfolio of new climate policy measures, coupled with favorable energy market developments, saw U.S. greenhouse gas emissions fall more in absolute terms over the past decade than in any other major economy, including the European Union. Many observers also ascribed the successful adoption of the 2015 Paris Agreement to prior U.S. diplomatic engagement with China. All this, however, has now been put to question with the election of President Donald Trump, who has repeatedly pledged to dismantle many of his predecessor’s environmental policies. With conservative majorities in both Chambers of the U.S. Congress, supportive constituencies at the state and local level, and a number of cabinet appointments that have expressly denied the need for climate action or the very existence of anthropogenic climate change, U.S. climate policy is clearly poised for a dramatic turn. What are the early signals sent by members of the Trump administration and U.S. Congress, and how credible are they? And, from a European perspective, what are the likely implications of an obstructive U.S. for international and European climate policy efforts?

Michael Mehling, Deputy Director, The Center for Energy and Environmental PolicyResearch, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Antto Vihma, Senior Research Fellow, the Finnish Institute of International Affairs

For further information, please contact: Marie-Louise Hindsberg, Tel. +358 9 432 7712,