The Sierra Club, the Council of Canadians, and Greenpeace México released a new report, NAFTA 2.0: For People or Polluters? In the trinational report, leading economists from México, the U.S. and Canada present original research on the North American Free Trade Agreement’s (NAFTA) obstacles to climate progress and quantify the climate pollution locked in by the controversial trade deal.
As talks to renegotiate NAFTA intensify, the report reveals how the Trump administration’s NAFTA 2.0 agenda poses even greater climate threats. In contrast, the report lays out a new proposal for a climate-friendly NAFTA replacement.
“NAFTA was written to support corporate polluters, not climate-impacted communities. The deal must be fundamentally rewritten to benefit the working families hit hardest by the fossil fuel economy,” said Ben Beachy, report author and director of Sierra Club’s A Living Economy program. “Instead, Trump’s climate-denying agenda for NAFTA 2.0 would give corporations a new, backdoor way to block climate protections while letting them offshore more jobs and pollution. We cannot shift to a clean energy future if a corporate trade deal tethers us to the fossil fuel past.”
Written with input from fossil fuel executives, NAFTA includes an array of little-known rules that bind North America to fossil fuel dependency. After more than two decades of NAFTA, the deal is finally being renegotiated, offering an opportunity to prioritize climate-impacted communities and workers, not corporate polluters. Instead, the Trump administration is entertaining new corporate-backed rules for NAFTA 2.0 that would pose additional barriers to climate action.
“NAFTA’s existing protections for oil and gas corporations are exacerbating México’s dependence on fossil fuels, crowding out wind and solar power, and encouraging fracking,” said Dr. Alejandro Álvarez Béjar, report author and economics professor at the National Autonomous University of México. “But proposals for NAFTA 2.0 could make matters even worse by locking in the deregulation of oil and gas in México, creating long-lasting barriers to climate progress.”