Center for American Progress

RELEASE: President-elect Trump Once Thought a Clean Energy Economy Was Good for Business, and It Still Is
Press Release

RELEASE: President-elect Trump Once Thought a Clean Energy Economy Was Good for Business, and It Still Is

Washington, D.C. — Eight years ago, Donald Trump and his children—Ivanka, Donald Jr., and Eric—joined dozens of other business leaders on an open letter to world leaders urging them to secure an ambitious global agreement on climate change. At the time, they called the consequences of inaction “catastrophic and irreversible” and the science supporting these facts “irrefutable.” The signees argued that investing in a clean energy economy was the right way to mitigate the harmful emissions putting the planet at risk.

Fast forward to 2017, when the risks, consequences, and facts are as irrefutable as ever—but now, President-elect Trump is a climate denier and conspiracy theorist who has called for the United States to pull out of the historic Paris Agreement to combat climate change. Pulling out of this critical pact would be bad for the environment; bad for public health; and, as the Center for American Progress argues in a newly released column, eminently bad for business.

“President-elect Trump once saw the danger of a changing climate and the economic benefits of a clean energy economy, but you would never know that based on his campaign rhetoric and Cabinet nominees,” said Cathleen Kelly, CAP Senior Fellow and co-author of the column. “But the business of clean energy remains good business. Climate change is a threat to the bottom lines of U.S. businesses, and the shift to a clean energy economy is already underway, including the potential to create jobs and boost businesses in the United States. President-elect Trump, the businessman, ought to see that.”

The column lays out three main points showing that the global efforts to combat climate change will protect the bottom lines of U.S. businesses; bolster the already burgeoning clean energy economy; and add to the millions of jobs already created by the shift away from polluting fuels. The world is continuing to work toward the goals set in the Paris Agreement and has signaled that it will do so with or without the United States. If the incoming administration pulls out of the agreement, the United States will be standing on the sidelines as the world’s clean energy economy moves on.

Click here to read the column.

For more information on this topic or to speak with an expert, contact Tom Caiazza at or 202.481.7141.