Trump expected to withdraw from Paris climate agreement

Carla Harmon
May 31, 2017

"I will be announcing my decision on the Paris Accord over the next few days".

The global agreement, which went into effect seven months ago, is considered to be a major part the environmental legacy of the Obama administration.

U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee member Lindsey Graham speaks during the hearing on May 8, 2017, on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C. On Sunday, he called for Russian Federation to be punished for its involvement in the 2016 presidential election in which Donald Trump defeated Hillary Clinton.

President Barack Obama pledge to cut USA emissions from to 28 percent below 2005 levels by 2025.

For years, Donald Trump has made it clear that he doesn't give a shit about the environment. Others who supported staying included Trump's secretary of state, Rex Tillerson, and major oil companies such as ExxonMobil and Shell.

The only other two countries in the United Nations that did not support the deal are Nicaragua and Syria.

Should Trump leave the pact, the U.S. would be the first country to exit, which would also be the second time that America has signed onto a global climate deal under a Democratic president only to walk away from the same agreement under a Republican predecessor, as President George W. Bush ultimately reneged on the Kyoto Protocol agreed to by President Bill Clinton in 1997.

A White House official told the Associated Press there might be "caveats in the language" regarding the withdrawal from the accord, leaving open the possibility that the withdrawal may not be final and permanent. Chief strategist Steve Bannon supports an exit, while senior adviser Jared Kushner generally thinks the deal is bad, but would like to find a way to see if the USA emissions targets can be changed.

The US President is said to have told those close to him, including the head of the Environmental Protection Agency, that he will not honour the 2015 accord which seeks to cut global carbon emissions.

Although he tweeted that he would make a decision next week, his apparent reluctance to embrace the first legally binding global climate deal that was signed by 195 countries clearly annoyed German Chancellor Angela Merkel.

Alden Meyer, the director of strategy and policy for the Union of Concerned Scientists, an advocacy group in Washington, said the discord over climate change was unusual for G-7 meetings.

Kushner has been considered a moderating voice in the White House, including pushing Trump to break his campaign promise to withdraw from the Paris Agreement.

Trump claimed before taking office that climate change was a "hoax" created by the Chinese to hurt the US economy.

"The entire discussion about climate was very hard, if not to say very dissatisfying", Merkel told reporters.

The United States is the country with the second-highest carbon emissions in the world, only behind China.

The decision to withdraw from the climate accord was influenced by a letter from 22 Republican U.S. senators, including Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, calling for an exit, Axios reported.

Other reports by iNewsToday