In the wake of a very unusual G7 meeting in Sicily, the world is rife with speculation that President Trump may back out of the Paris Climate Accords that were signed under Barack Obama. At this point nothing is certain, though there are reports from unconfirmed sources that place the real possibility of a Paris exit on the table this week. Trump made no comment on the likelihood of his policy action publicly, but with what is at stake, he is leaving a very important issue floating in the ether.

A global impact

The Paris Accords were designed to help some of the poorest nations on earth cope with the mayhem that is beginning to affect low-lying areas around the planet.

Not only would an exit by the United States mean the end of funding to programs that help poor nations cope, but it would also mean that the US would no longer have to cut emissions.

“Four years of the Trump administration may have only modest consequences, but eight years of bad policy would probably wreck the world’s chances of keeping warming below the international target of 2 degrees Celsius,” Professor Michael Oppenheimer of Princeton University told Bloomberg via email, adding that, “The odds of our avoiding the climate-danger zone would fade to zero.”

Trump's blindspot

It is no surprise that German Prime Minister Angela Merkel has been outspoken in her public appearances since the G7 meeting, saying publicly that, "The era in which we could fully rely on others is over to some extent."

While Ms.

Merkel's comments may be inspired by an election year in Germany, the split that seems to be developing between the US and traditional allies in Europe bears watching. Organizations like NATO hang in the balance, and the post-WW2 world order looks more frail all the time.

Unintended consequences

While Trump doesn't seem to mind playing fast and loose in global politics, his actions may have ramifications beyond his present mindset.

The US relies on NATO member states to project power in Eurasia, and with the fraying alliances, future transatlantic cooperation is being called into question across the board.

It will be interesting to see what President Trump decides to do in regard to The Paris Accords, but it would seem that at this point, there are already actions underway in Europe. If these divisions continue to widen, there is no telling where the next major fissure will appear in the once stable fabric of the old world order.