Natalia Welzenbach-Marcu | December 27, 2017
President Trump announced this month that the United States would be withdrawing its involvement with UNESCO by the end of 2018.
The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization is one that the US itself helped form, after World War II. The decision was preceded by many years of unpaid funding fees; the US bill of funding technically owed to UNESCO adds up to over $550 million.
There are multiple reasons for the withdrawal–including disagreements between the United States and UNESCO about Israel. The main question, however, is this: how will this move affect the environment?
UNESCO is heavily involved with environmental well-being, though that is not its only goal as an organization. Its Natural Science Sector runs multiple international environmental programs from its headquarters in Paris, including Man and Biosphere, a program launched to protect the environments of areas nominated by the national government of that area’s country.
The US has pledged to remain involved with UNESCO as an observer and to consider the organization’s findings when making decisions.