Donald Trump

Former President Donald Trump gestures while delivering a story, during his remarks at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) in National Harbor, Maryland, on Saturday, February 24, 2024.

(Photo: Tom Brenner for The Washington Post via Getty Images)

Planet-Warming Emissions Would Soar If Trump Wins Second Term: Study

New research suggests Trump's plans for another four years in the White House could doom the climate.

Former President Donald Trump returning to the White House would be devastating for the climate, a new analysis shows.

A study released on Wednesday by Carbon Brief looks at Trump's plans for a second term and policies that President Joe Biden has implemented during his time in the White House. When the two are compared, it states that Trump's second term would lead to 4 billion more tons of CO2 being released into the atmosphere by 2030. That's the combined annual emissions of the European Union and Japan.

Trump's plans would be so destructive to the climate because they would roll back Biden's emissions-reduction policies.

"Carbon Brief's analysis is based on an aggregation of modeling by various U.S. research groups. It highlights the significant impact of the Biden administration's climate policies. This includes the Inflation Reduction Act—which Trump has pledged to reverse—along with several other policies," the study says.

Biden's policies certainly haven't always been climate-friendly—including his approval of the Willow oil project—but the analysis shows how impactful rolling back his positive climate policies would be.

The study claims the additional CO2 that would be emitted due to a second Trump term could lead to approximately $900 billion worth of climate damages. Furthermore, the study might actually be underestimating the damage Trump could do.

"It might understate Trump's impact. For example, his pledge to 'drill, baby, drill' is not included within the analysis and would likely raise U.S. and global emissions further through the increased extraction and burning of oil, gas, and coal," the study says.

The planet would very likely experience a temperature increase beyond 1.5°C, the study says, and quite possibly beyond 2°C.

Many American politicians have noted that Trump returning to the White House would be disastrous for the climate. Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) tweeted on Wednesday that a second Trump term would mean the world would "lose the fight against climate change." Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) and Sen. Ed Markey (D-Mass.) issued a similar warning in February.

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