ACP: Withdrawal from Paris Agreement undermines health threats from climate change


At their short summit, the European Union and China - two of the world's major polluters - are set to issue a statement reaffirming their stance on global warming following Trump's announcement Thursday. French President Emanuel Macron echoed Trump's Make America Great Again slogan with one that was more relevant for a global audience, while others added the USA president to beloved 90s cartoons.

US President Donald Trump's decision to withdraw from the Paris climate change pact has prompted reactions from all over the world, mostly questioning the logic of exiting a carefully negotiated agreement that managed to bring nearly every country on earth to the same table.

Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt had become a leading voice for withdrawing completely from the climate pact.

Trump announced Thursday the United States would withdraw from the agreement, calling it "draconian".

India, a major polluter and a growing economy, has kept mum on whether the US decision will affect Indian energy policy, and Prime Minister Narendra Modi - who is coming to Paris on Saturday to meet Macron - offered no reaction to Trump's decision. As NPR has reported, "the only other countries not part of the agreement are Syria, which is in the midst of a civil war, and Nicaragua, which argued that the Paris accord did not go far enough to curb global emissions".

For anxious allies, Trump's rejection of the Paris pact is particularly jarring in the wake of his first worldwide trip last week.

"It's obvious that without the participation of the United States the Paris agreement will be unworkable because the United States is one of the biggest generator of emissions", Kremlin aide Andrei Belousov said.

Climate analysts say Trump's many attempts to roll back climate regulations since becoming president had already been jeopardizing America's ability to meet its Paris commitments.

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"This pact was signed by former President Obama without Congressional approval".

To be sure, Trump is hardly the first American president to turn his back on a predecessor's global agreement.

The climate action of American states and cities, as well as industry, could also help to mitigate the worst of Trump's climate policies, said report co-author Niklas Höhne.

In television interviews the morning after Trump's announcement, Vice-President Mike Pence and Kellyanne Conway, a senior White House aide, defended Trump's decision as a reassertion of America's sovereignty. France, Germany and Italy quickly issued a joint statement Thursday saying the Paris climate accord can't be renegotiated.

"By the way, we should be grateful to President Trump". It said the withdrawal of the United States was a sad day for the world community.

Moscow wants to wait before ratifying the Paris climate agreement until the participating countries set out clear-cut rules, Putin stressed.

"If you're sitting in Riyadh or Amman or Cairo, the president of the United States has just bowed to your concerns to a much greater degree than he has bowed to the concerns of Paris, Berlin and other traditional allies on an issue of global impact", said Robert Satloff, who runs the Washington Institute for Near East Policy.