Trump to pull out of climate accord, White House official says

Elias Hubbard
June 4, 2017

It also would threaten a $100 billion-a-year stream of funds that industrial nations have pledged to persuade developing nations to cut back their own emissions, endangering the political foundations of the global fight against climate change.

President Trump's decision to withdraw the United States from the Paris Climate Agreement is irresponsible, hasty, and short-sighted.

Trump is expected to make an announcement on it this week.

While Trump now favors an exit, he has been known to change his thinking on major decisions and tends to seek counsel from a range of inside and outside advisers, many with differing agendas, until the last minute. Several of his top aides also opposed the action, including his daughter, Ivanka Trump.

He was to meet later Wednesday with Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, who has favoured remaining in the agreement. Chief strategist Steve Bannon supports an exit. Senior adviser Jared Kushner generally thinks the deal is bad but still would like to see if emissions targets can be changed.

Although the officials caution no decision is final until the president officially announces it, the White House is now working on how to roll out the announcement and explain the reasons behind Trump's decision.

The accord, agreed to by the Obama administration along with almost 200 other countries in 2015, would have forced the reduce fossil fuel emissions by nearly 30 percent by 2025.

He argued that climate action was a sound security policy, warning of mass displacement from natural disasters or from refugees whose lands become unlivable. The official, who is involved in preparing the meeting between European Union officials and China's premier, was not authorized to speak publicly and discussed the matter on condition of anonymity because the meeting statement was not finalized.

The secretary-general's speech comes as Trump this week decides if the U.S. - the second-largest emitter of greenhouse gases after China - will adhere to the emissions cut layed out in the 2015 Paris climate agreement.

"President Trump is also abdicating responsibility to protect communities in Maryland and across the country from the costly threats of drought, wildfire, storms, and sea level rise", Van Hollen said.

The European Commission president on Wednesday said that it was the "duty of Europe" to stand up to the US if President Donald Trump decides to pull his country out of the Paris climate change accord.

During a trip to Europe this week, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi expressed India's commitment to fighting climate change and said it would be a "crime" to spoil the environment for future generations. "Climate solutions provide opportunities that are unmatchable".

"If President Trump reads the Pope's writings, I'm confident he will not withdraw from the agreement".

"The message is simple: the sustainability train has left the station".

According to the Axios website, the first to break the news citing two sources with direct knowledge of the matter, Trump has reached a decision to pull out of the landmark deal on cutting global carbon emissions to curb global warming.

CBS News confirmed the report, saying Trump had told allies he would be pulling out of the deal. Like his boss, Pruitt has questioned the consensus of climate scientists that the Earth is warming and that man-made climate emissions are to blame. US inaction on greenhouse gases may eventually discourage other countries from continuing their own efforts to cut back, said Oppenheimer at Princeton.

The upcoming decision is a victory for hardliners such as senior White House adviser Stephen Bannon, who argued that the deal would hobble the US economy and Trump's energy agenda, and a defeat for moderates like Trump's daughter Ivanka, who feared that withdrawing would damage USA relations overseas. President Trump's decision today highlights one of the fundamental differences between Republicans and Democrats and it is a sad statement that Republicans continue to refute science and the will of the worldwide community on an issue of global importance. It is thus not surprising, that many private corporations, including major oil and gas companies have adopted climate action.

Quitting the Paris accord may not resonate with members of Trump's Republican Party as much as his administration expects. "This put the United States of America to a very very big economic disadvantage", he said, adding that as a result of the deal, the USA would not be able to compete with other countries in the world. They include Apple, Google and Walmart. That promise helped rally supporters sharing his scepticism of global efforts to police USA carbon emissions.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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