World reacts to United States withdrawal from Paris Agreement

Andrew Cummings
June 3, 2017

German Chancellor Angela Merkel has said that President Donald Trump's decision to withdraw the United States from the Paris climate deal is "very regrettable".

Merkel expressed regret over Washington's decision, but noted that it would not affect other parties to the agreement, and would instead make Germany, along with the nations of Europe and the world, more determined to unite their efforts in handling the climate change issue.

On Thursday, US President Donald Trump announced that Washington would withdraw from the Paris climate deal, adding that the country would negotiate the terms of the accord to make it more beneficial for the United States. Fiji's Prime Minister Frank Bainimarama, who is the incoming head of the U.N. Climate Change Conferences, which formalised the 2015 Paris accord, said Trump's decision was "deeply disappointing".

But Britain did not sign a joint statement by the leaders of Germany, France and Italy, who said they regretted Trump's decision and insisted that the accord can not be renegotiated.

Ireland's former president and former UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Mary Robinson called the move "truly shocking" given the historical responsibility for global greenhouse gas emissions that the US bears. Syria and Nicaragua are the only other non-participants in the accord.

The UN chief said he was "deeply convinced" that U.S. "states, cities, the business community, the civil society will also remain engaged, will bet in the green economy".

"I regret the decision of the U.S. president", Merkel said on Thursday evening.

Instead, May released a somewhat insipid statement, saying she was "disappointed" with the decision, while stressing that the United Kingdom remained committed to the Paris Agreement.

"We don't want other leaders and other countries laughing at us anymore". China overtook the United States as the world's biggest emitter of greenhouse gases in 2007.

Trump announced the USA withdrawal in an address at the White House on June 1, saying the accord "punished" the United States and would cost millions of American jobs. Here are the reactions from all over the world on the US Leaving the Paris Agreement. Foreign ministry spokesperson Hua Chunying was quick to reassure, saying that China will "stay committed to upholding and promoting the global governance on climate change, and take an active part in the multilateral process on climate change". Washington's decision to pull out of the Paris Climate Agreement and the response of the European Union countries prove that the parties are facing the worst ever crisis in relations, Chairman of the Russian State Duma (lower house of parliament) Committee for Education and Science Vyacheslav Nikonov told reporters on Friday. Under the pact, which was years in the making, countries both rich and poor committed to reducing emissions of greenhouse gases generated by burning fossils fuels and blamed by scientists for warming the planet.

In New York, some major buildings, like the World Trade Center and City Hall, were lit green in solidarity with the climate agreement, echoing a move in Paris.

Given that Trump has quite candidly described climate change as a "hoax" and said that global warming was a "Chinese conspiracy" there is evidence to believe that he will exit the accord.

Vice President Mike Pence, said that Trump "has demonstrated his commitment not just to keep his word, but to put American workers, American consumers, American energy, and the American people first".

In what could turn into a global diplomatic realignment, the European Union and China held summit talks that EU chief Jean-Claude Juncker said could be a signal to the world.

But Democrats deplored his move as "tragedy for the environment" and an "abdication of leadership" on the world stage. The administration also has halted efforts to clear the U.S. Clean Power Plan from court challenges and already relaxed enforcement of some environmental regulations. It said the withdrawal of the United States was a sad day for the world community. Neither attended Trump's speech on Thursday, although the White House said their absence was not related to the fact that the president decided against their advice when it came to the Paris agreement.

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