Trump still not backing Paris climate agreement

Trump still not backing Paris climate agreement

World leaders gathered here engaged in a heated argument over combating climate change, a major point of dispute between G7 heads of state and President Donald Trump, who is considering withdrawing from the landmark Paris climate accord.

Pope Francis, who has framed climate change as an urgent moral crisis and blamed global warming on an unfair, fossil fuel-based industrial model that harms the poor, also appeared to be sending a message to Trump during their meeting.

Cohn said that Trump did not want his G-7 partners to think he did not care about the environment, so the president told them, "The environment is very, very important to me, Donald Trump". He came here to get smarter.

He Jiankun, an expert from the Specialist Committee on National Climate Change, made the remarks during a seminar on "China-U.S. Action and Cooperation in the New Age of Global Climate Governance" held in Beijing on May 24 by the Brookings-Tsinghua Center for Public Policy, Tsinghua-Berkeley Joint Research Center on Energy and Climate Change, and World Resources Institute.

Trump met with world leaders this week at the G7 Summit in Sicily where many set out to lobby the United States president over staying committed to the climate agreement.

"There is one open question, which is the U.S. position on the Paris climate accords..."

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It would also be fiercely opposed at home by the U.S. environment lobby and by American corporations that are now investing heavily in cleaner technology.

Trump has already appeared to push a North Atlantic Treaty Organisation leader aside in Brussels and caused a diplomatic scuffle in Italy after accusing Germany of being "very bad" on trade. Trade was a big topic, with Cohn saying the United States' guiding principle will be "we will treat you the way you treat us", suggesting that retaliatory tariffs could be imposed. Under the G-7 agreement, the Trump administration will be given more time to consider whether it will remain committed to the 2015 Paris deal to rein in greenhouse gas emissions.

Even if a decision is not forthcoming, European leaders have signaled that they will push Trump hard on the Paris emissions deal, which has comprehensive support across the continent. In a Wall Street Journal op-ed earlier this month, Rep. Kevin Cramer (R-N.D.), who was an energy adviser on Trump's campaign, argued that the United States should advocate "advancing technology for clean coal and pushing for increased investment and a better regulatory environment" in future climate talks.

The Group of Seven world leaders, or rather Six excluding Trump, tried to tame the U.S. president. and failed.

Others say it could be worse because other countries might follow a U.S. exit, leading to more emissions from both the USA and the rest. He will remain in Europe for the journey's last two days, this time in at a picturesque coastal town in Sicily for a gathering of the G-7.

President Donald Trump promised to cancel the 2015 United Nations pact while on the campaign trail. The final G-7 statement expresses "understanding" for the USA review process.

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Cohn said Trump was being critical of a USA trade deal with Germany and not the powerful European ally as a whole.

One of those relationships was on display as Trump began the day with a meeting with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.

"If we lag, the noose tightens", said Princeton University climate scientist Michael Oppenheimer, co-editor of the peer-reviewed journal Climatic Change.

Officials acknowledge the summit is effectively about damage limitation against a backdrop of fears among United States partners that the Trump presidency could undermine the worldwide order in place since World War II. But Trump also showed signs Friday that, true to form, he might be willing to deal.

The lawmakers warned that staying in the accord could mean legal challenges to Trump's already-announced intention to roll back environmental legislation - including his cancellation of the Obama-era emissions reduction measures that were meant to get the United States to its target under the accord. As a candidate Trump denounced the deal, but has since said he's waiting to make a final decision.

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