PAPER: Merkel Is Laying A Trap For Trump At The G20 Summit

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Michael Bastasch DCNF Managing Editor
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German Chancellor Angela Merkel could use the upcoming G20 summit in July to pressure President Donald Trump into staying party to an international agreement to fight global warming.

Merkel faces re-election this fall, and is taking heat for letting in hundreds of thousands of Muslim refugees and for pushing green energy policies that have doubled electricity prices.

She needs a win, writes Rupert Darwall, and cornering Trump on his commitment to fighting global warming may be what Merkel has in mind.

“This year, Angela Merkel faces a tougher-than-expected reelection battle and needs a big summit win against Trump,” Darwall, author of the book “The Age of Global Warming: A History,” wrote in a column for National Review Online.

Trump promised to pull out of the Paris agreement, which went into force in November 2016. Merkel was a major backer of the United Nations agreement, and wants the U.S. to remain party to it.

Darwall said Merkel could do something similar to what former British Prime Minister Tony Blair did to former President George W. Bush at the G8 summit in 2005. Blaire cornered Bush, saying “[a]ll of us agreed that climate change is happening now, that human activity is contributing to it, and that it could affect every part of the globe.”

“This position was reflected in the summit communiqué, putting Bush on the hook for economically damaging policies that he would never escape,” Darwall wrote. “His climate-change strategy paved the way for Barack Obama’s.”

Obama made the U.S. party to the Paris agreement last year, pledging to cut greenhouse gas emissions 26 to 28 percent by 2025. The Senate never approved the Paris agreement.

Trump promised on the campaign trail he’d pull out of the Paris agreement and top funding UN global warming programs. It’s not clear when Trump plans on pulling out of Paris.

Darwall, however, says Trump has ammunition to push back against Merkel’s political pressure. Trump could point to the failure of Germany’s costly, yet futile, green energy scheme, called Energiewende.

“Trump could shine a spotlight on Germany’s disastrous energy policies, telling it as it is,” Darwall wrote. “No other country in the world is pursuing such a radical course, Germany’s leading energy expert and nature conservationist Fritz Vahrenholt says.”

“Already renewables are costing German consumers €25 billion ($26.6 billion) annually,” Darwall wrote. “This year, the extra renewable levy on power bills is rising to 6.88 euro cents (7.31 U.S. cents) per kilowatt hour, compared to the average 12.75 cents per kilowatt hour American households paid in November.”

Despite the high cost, “emissions from the power sector have been flat and even rising and the total CO2 reductions Berlin promises by 2020 will be wiped out by China in a mere three months,” Darwall noted.

“Saving face is not a good reason for the United States to follow suit,” Darwall wrote. “Indeed, Donald Trump would be doing Germany and Europe a big favor by using the question of American participation in the Paris agreement as a ‘teaching moment’ on the folly of their energy policies.”

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