President Trump on Thursday announced he’s pulling the United States out of the 195-nation Paris climate change agreement.
“In order to fulfill my solemn duty to protect America and its citizens, the United States will withdraw from the Paris climate accord,” Trump said in a ceremony in the White House Rose Garden.
“The bottom line is that the Paris accord is very unfair at the highest level to the United States,” Trump said.
The president added he will “begin negotiations to re-enter — whether the Paris accord, or really, an entirely new transaction — on terms that are fairer to the United States, its business, its workers, its people, its taxpayers.”
“We are getting out, but we will start to negotiate and we will see if we can make a deal that is fair.”
The Hill added:
“The move, which fulfills a campaign promise made just over a year ago, is a major rebuke of former President Obama’s environmental and diplomatic agenda. Obama had led worldwide negotiations for the non-binding pact in 2015, as part of an aggressive second-term climate agenda.
Trump’s decision adds to his efforts in his first four months to roll back Obama’s environmental regulations and seek an “America First” agenda that reverses many of Obama’s actions on trade, defense and international affairs.
The rejection also snubs the nearly 200 nations who came together for the first major worldwide agreement that aims to tackle climate change. World leaders from Europe, Asia and elsewhere had urged Trump in recent days to stay in the pact.”
Former President Obama criticized President Trump’s decision to withdraw the U.S. from the Paris climate deal Thursday, saying that Trump will “reject the future” by pulling away from the pact.
“The nations that remain in the Paris Agreement will be the nations that reap the benefits in jobs and industries created,” Obama said in a statement. “I believe the United States of America should be at the front of the pack.”
“But even in the absence of American leadership; even as this Administration joins a small handful of nations that reject the future; I’m confident that our states, cities, and businesses will step up and do even more to lead the way, and help protect for future generations the one planet we’ve got.”
German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Chinese Premier Li Keqiang made an appearance Thursday to band together over their commitment to fight climate change, according to reports.
“We are living in times of global uncertainty and see our responsibility to expand our partnership in all the different areas and to push for a world order based on law,” Merkel said during a joint press conference with Li in Berlin, Reuters reported.
“Fighting climate change is a global consensus, not invented by China,” Li said, seemingly referencing a tweet by Trump in 2012.
The concept of global warming was created by and for the Chinese in order to make U.S. manufacturing non-competitive.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 6, 2012
A senior Vatican official says they would view President Trump pulling the U.S. out of the Paris climate agreement as a “huge slap in the face.”
“If he really does [pull out], it would be a huge slap in the face for us,” Bishop Marcelo Sánchez Sorondo said Thursday, according to Reuters. “It will be a disaster for everyone.”
Sánchez Sorondo said he believes the U.S. oil lobby “maneuvered” Trump into opposing the global climate pact, which includes nearly 200 nations.
“[Withdrawing] would not only be a disaster but completely unscientific,” added Sánchez Sorondo, who is head of the Vatican’s Pontifical Academy of Sciences.
“Saying that we need to rely on coal and oil is like saying that the earth is not round. It is an absurdity dictated by the need to make money.”
Oil, gas and coal interests have filled Donald Trump’s ‘swamp’ with cash, pouring millions of dollars into Trump’s inaugural fund while reenergizing their federal government lobbying efforts during the year’s first first three months, according to a Center for Public Integrity analysis of federal disclosures.
The Center for Public Integrity added:
“In all, oil, gas and coal companies and executives contributed more than $1 out of every $10 raised for Trump’s inauguration, for which he raisednearly $107 million overall. That’s significantly more than the $1 the sector contributed for every $34 President Barack Obama raised overall for his second inauguration, per an analysis from the Center for Responsive Politics.
Meanwhile, the oil and gas industry spent $36.1 million on federal lobbying efforts from Jan. 1 through March 31. That’s an 11 percent increase over the same period last year, Center for Responsive Politics data shows.“
During his first 100 days in office, Trump and the Republican-controlled Congress have moved to ease or remove restrictions on coal, oil and gas companies. The efforts, some of which are preliminary or may face legal fights, include:
- Rescinding the Stream Protection Rule that banned dumping toxic heavy metals into waterways during the coal mining process
- Expediting the Keystone XL Pipeline and the Dakota Access Pipeline, two projects that had failed to win approval from the Obama administration
- Rolling back the Clean Power Plan, which sets standards for carbon dioxide emissions from power plants, limits oil and gas extraction on federal land and establishes a moratorium on new coal leasing
- Repealing a requirement that energy companies disclose payments to foreign governments
- Requiring a review of national monuments created by the Antiquities Act, potentially opening up protected lands to drilling and mining interests
- Mandating a review of offshore drilling regulations that could roll back safety standards put in place after the death of 11 people during the Deepwater Horizon explosion and oil spill. The review could also open up marine sanctuaries to commercial drilling.