Far too many critics of the Paris Climate Agreement focus on the narrow minded view of environmental protection as anti-business. Environmental protection is one of the most pro-business strategies for a 21st century. Climate change is the top priority but so are the jobs in clean energy and conservation. Economic opportunity is not created equal and for far too long globalization has meant squeezing natural resources and ignoring wildlife concerns.
We need the international organizations to compete over renewable energy and not fossil fuels. The Paris Climate Agreement is a vision for reducing emissions and how climate solutions can be implemented equitably. For clean energy to thrive in a global market we need to effectively transition folks from the fossil fuel industry into the new, cleaner economy that includes a monetary incentive to reduce carbon. The Tongass National Forest in Southeast Alaska is the largest national forest in the United States at 16.7 million acres and it is really great at sequestering carbon in soil. Most of its area is temperate rainforest, and is remote enough to be home to many species of endangered and rare flora and fauna. Unfortunately there is a coordinated effort between the federal government and the Alaska state government to clear cut and mine one of the most unique environments in the world. Soil carbon sequestration is a process in which CO2 is removed from the atmosphere and stored in the soil carbon pool and the Tongass National Forest is incredibly efficient at removing carbon. Destroying an ancient forest in the name of a boom and bust logging and mining operation makes terrible business sense. We need to protect all public lands and the Paris Climate Agreement helps us get there.