Global warming is real. Just ask Lady Liberty.
President Donald Trump announced Thursday that the United States would leave the Paris Climate Accord: an international treaty aimed to sharply curb the effects of climate change on the planet.
Some of the best-loved destinations around the world — including the Statue of Liberty in New York City and Venice, Italy — have long suffered from the effects of climate change, and are in grave danger in the coming decades if steps are not taken to ensure their protection.
Rising waters and temperatures are just some of the threats to world heritage sites such as these. An increase in wildfires has threatened parts of Yellowstone, and warming waters have all but wiped out the Great Barrier Reef in Australia.
The treaty aimed to prevent the earth from warming more than 2 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels by capping dangerous greenhouse gases, and making a commitment to use renewable energy sources. Every country in the world except Syria and Nicaragua signed the agreement.
Trump’s influence in this case is limited, as the treaty was non-binding from the start, and it would take four years to fully remove the U.S. from the agreement. Mayors and governors from cities and states around the world were also quick to issue statements that they would continue to uphold the terms of the treaty, regardless of the president’s decision.
Because without the mutual support of the world’s nations, these destinations remain at risk, and could render them unavailable to future generations.