'Trump Effect' is hurting Paris Agreement, says report

President Donald Trump addressing a joint session of the U.S. Congress on February 28, 2017.

(CNN)The "Trump Effect" is slowing down global climate action, and working against the ambition of the Paris Agreement, according to a new report.

The US president's policies are "acting against the momentum which the Paris Agreement on climate change hoped to generate," argues a report from the Institute of International and European Affairs (IIEA) -- an Irish think tank.
It was released Monday as talks were beginning at the COP24 UN climate conference in Katowice, Poland, where nations are tasked with finalizing the guidelines around the Paris Agreement.
    The Paris Agreement committed almost 200 countries to keep global warming well below two degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels and, if possible, below 1.5 degrees.
    The United States ratified the Agreement, but Trump announced in June 2017 that the US would withdraw from it -- although it cannot formally leave until November 2020.

    'Creating cover for others to follow suit'

    The IIEA report argues that Trump policies -- the "Trump Effect" -- are creating roadblocks in three ways.
    It says that the decision to withdraw from the Agreement has created "moral and political cover for others to follow suit." It gives the examples of Russia and Turkey, which have signed the Agreement but have yet to ratify it, and Australia, which abandoned legislation to comply with its Paris pledge.
    "Australia was set to bring forth legislation to implement its extremely weak Paris pledge," says Joseph Curtin, the report's author. "But in the debate that surrounded it, various leaders referred to the precedent established by President Trump, saying if Trump wasn't committed to the Paris Agreement, why should they bring forth legislation they alleged would be damaging to the Australian economy?
    "You could see the oxygen the Trump Effect gave to the Australian political debate and how it energized those who sought to defect from Australia's Paris pledge."