When US president Donald Trump pulled his country out of the Paris climate agreement in June, he joined an exclusive club of three dissident presidents: Syria’s Bashar Assad and Nicaragua’s Daniel Ortega. Now Ortega is reportedly ditching his friends.
“We will soon adhere, we will sign the Paris Agreement,” Ortega told Nicaraguan newspaper El Nuevo Diario. In 2015, 75% of Nicaragua’s energy already came (pdf, p. 3) from renewable sources, and it aimed to get that up to 90% by 2020 according to the World Bank.
Ortega had rejected the Paris deal before, supposedly because he thought it wasn’t strong enough. The agreement aims to keep the global average temperature increase “well below” 2°C above the pre-industrial age, but the signatories hadn’t pledged enough emission reductions to achieve the goal.
But after Trump’s decision, most countries, including China and India, reaffirmed their commitments to the goal. Tiny Nicaragua’s decision to join the accord will hardly make much of a difference to the treaty’s aims, but it leaves Trump in a club of two with one of the world’s most bloodthirsty dictators.