US Allies Urge Trump Not To Abandon Climate Change Agreement
- Author: Zachary Reyes Jun 01, 2017,
Jun 01, 2017, 13:31
The president himself said in a Wednesday evening tweet that he would officially announce his decision on the accord from the White House Rose Garden at 3:00 p.m. Thursday.
Although President Trump's hardcore supporters will be behind any pull out from the Paris agreement, polls show the majority of USA voters are for it as are many global companies eager to embrace the technology of tomorrow.
White House chief strategist Stephen Bannon and Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt have pushed for a withdrawal, which wouldn't actually be finalized until near the end of Trump's term.
During his campaign for the presidency, Trump promised to withdraw the from the agreement.
"The Trumps in the Liberal party may have "champagne on ice" in preparation for the U.S. withdrawal, but that ice won't be there for very long if we don't get global warming under control".
A pullout also would be one more step by the Republican president to erase the legacy of his predecessor, Democrat Barack Obama, who helped broker the accord and praised it during a trip to Europe this month.
Pulling the United States from the accord could further alienate American allies in Europe already wary of Trump and call into question US leadership and trustworthiness on one of the world's leading issues.
If he does decide to withdraw from Paris, China and the European Union are vowing to stick with the agreement.
A frustrated German Chancellor Angela Merkel later warned that Europe "must take its fate into its own hands", citing the differences with Washington on climate change as evidence of their divergent paths.
Finland's prime minister said climate change won't be reversed "by closing your eyes". 195 countries - including the US - adopted this first-ever universal climate deal in 2015 that sets out a global action plan to put the world on track to avoid risky climate change.
Trump could also declare the Paris Agreement a legal treaty, which would require the Senate to approve it, the sources said. The choice is between a formal withdrawal that could take three years or leaving the United Nations treaty that the accord is based on, which would be quicker but more extreme, according to Axios.
A country can also withdraw from the 1992 UN Framework Convention on Climate Change, under whose auspices the deal was negotiated.
Elon Musk, the chief executive of Tesla and a member of a White House manufacturing jobs advisory board, tweeted that if Trump does exit, he would have "no choice" but to end his affiliations with the administration.
"But even if the government decides to leave the Paris agreement, it's very important for U.S. society as a whole - the cities, the states, the companies, the businesses - to remain engaged", he said.
But the official says there may be "caveats in the language" that Trump uses to announce the withdrawal - leaving open the possibility that the decision isn't final.
These policies have made it highly unlikely that the United States could honor its Paris pledge to sharply cut carbon dioxide emissions.
In Congress, 40 Democratic senators sent Trump a letter saying withdrawal would hurt America's credibility and influence on the world stage.
What is not yet clear is whether Trump plans to initiate a formal withdrawal from the Paris accord, which under the terms of the agreement could take three years, or exit the underlying United Nations climate change treaty on which the accord was based.