Trade and Climate Change

June 8, 2017

Hello everybody out there in farm country. This radio commentary is brought to you by the National Corn Growers Association and CropLife America. They are friends, supporters, and allies of a healthy farm economy and prosperous rural America. Thank you.

And now for today’s commentary—

Two subjects today – It is time to renegotiate NAFTA, but we don’t want to get into a fight that could cost agriculture. Mexico does not have any tariffs on our farm exports. Mexico spends $19 billion on our commodities. Fortunately, the plan right now is to renegotiate a new agreement quickly – hopefully this year.

We have a conflict with Mexico over their sugar sales to us. Their sugar is subsidized, driving down our sugar prices and hurting our farmers. U.S. Department of Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross says, “We are quite optimistic.” In fact, we have an agreement if it survives the criticism. A sugar agreement would take one dispute off the table. We still have a huge manufacturing product trade deficit with Mexico. As we try to fix that, we don’t want to lose our ag advantage.

The second subject today is –The Paris Climate Agreement. President Trump said, “We’re getting out. And we will start to renegotiate and see if there is a better deal.” Green environmental elites are horrified. The President concluded that the agreement as written is bad for the U.S. National agreements are required to be approved by the Senate. President Obama just signed the Paris Agreement last September, but never sent it to the Senate for approval. Look back to 1997 when the Kyoto Climate Protocol was signed by President Bill Clinton. President Bush refused to implement that agreement. Since 1997, we still have seen our emissions drop faster than Europe.

According to the Heritage Foundation, if we had accepted the Paris Climate Treaty requirements, an American family of four would pay $30,000 more in higher electric prices over the next decade. The cost to the American economy would be $2.5 trillon. The opinion page of the Wall Street Journal last week had this to say: “The Big Con at the heart of the Paris agreement is that even its supporters concede that meeting all of its commitments won’t prevent more than a .17 degree Celsius increase in global temperatures by 2100.” That is almost nothing.

If we are actually going to experience global warming, we can’t do much to stop it. Look back in time 500 years or thousands of years. The earth saw global warming and global cooling and we didn’t even have cars then. Future generations here on earth will just have to adjust to the change.

If you would like to review my radio shows going back more than 20 years, just go online to Have .a great weekend.

Until next week, I am John Block from Washington.