President Donald Trump is expected to withdraw the United States out of a global pact to fight climate change. This move would put a strain on relations with U.S. allies while rallying his support base.
Trump’s decision should not come as a surprise. He has repeatedly expressed doubts about climate change, at times calling it a hoax to weaken U.S. industry. An overwhelming majority of scientists, however, say climate change is driven by human use of fossil fuels.
Trump did not confirm the decision in a post on Twitter Wednesday morning,
Tweeting only, “I will be announcing my decision on the Paris Accord over the next few days.”
Refusing to endorse the landmark climate change accord at a summit of the G7 group of wealthy nations on Saturday, Trump said he needed more time to decide.
Trump’s decision to pull out of the global pact to fight climate change, would place the United States in line with Syria and Nicaragua as the world’s only non-participants in the Paris Climate Agreement.
The move could have severe implications for the global pact, which relies heavily on the commitment of big polluter nations to reduce the emissions of gases scientists blame for droughts, sea level rise, and more frequent violent storms.
Trump likely to withdraw US from Paris climate according to reports, though he is weighing a final decision amid pressure from members of his own party, foreign governments and business leaders to remain committed to the carbon reduction agreement.
Under the global pact to fight climate change, the United States committed to reducing its emissions by 26 to 28 percent from 2005 levels by 2025. The accord agreed on by approximately 200 countries in Paris in 2015, would target planetary warming—in part by reducing carbon dioxide and other emissions from the burning of fossil fuels.
The withdrawal would not only place a significant blow to Obama’s legacy — it would send a horrible message—Trump’s withdrawal means that the United States will make no major effort to combat climate change.
Trump’s decision to withdraw from the climate accord was reportedly influenced by a letter from 22 Republican U.S. senators, including Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, calling for an exit.
Former President Barack Obama, who helped broker the accord, gave high remarks to the pact during a trip to Europe this month. He acknowledged the United States as the world’s second-largest carbon dioxide emitter next to China.
Climate pact supporters are concerned that a U.S. exit could create a domino effect and lead other nations to withdraw by weakening their commitments, thus softening an accord that scientists believe is critical to avoiding the worst impacts of climate change.
China, the European Union, and Canada have agreed to honor their commitments to the pact despite the United States withdrawal. India had also agreed to abide by the agreement.
During his campaign, Trump made a pledge to “cancel” the Paris deal within 100 days of becoming president, as part of an effort to bolster U.S. oil and coal industries. Trump’s vow to his loyal supporters sharing his skepticism of global efforts to police U.S. carbon emissions may have come full circle.
Oil majors Exxon Mobil and Shell supports the Paris Pact, along with some Republican lawmakers. Several big coal companies, including Cloud Peak Energy, have publicly urged Trump to remain in the Paris Accord to help protect the industry’s mining interests overseas, though others within the administration have asked Trump to exit the accord to help ease regulatory pressures on domestic miners.