Italy blamed President Donald Trump’s climate policies for a group of seven nations failing to affirm their commitment to the Paris climate agreement.
Italy’s economic development minister, Carlo Calenda, said Monday that it was “not possible” to sign a joint statement on the climate agreement because the Trump administration is “reviewing” its climate regulations. He is responsible for leading the group.
Italy wanted language reaffirming the G7′s commitment to the Paris climate change accord, which aims to keep so-called global warming below 2 degrees Celsius. Reports show 200 countries have already committed to the sweeping agreement.
“Without this, it would have been unacceptable, it would have been step backwards,” said one Italian official.
The Trump administration has not determined whether it intends on staying in the accord, even as various members of the White House suggest staying in the agreement would be smart from a diplomatic perspective.
North Dakota Rep. Kevin Cramer, for one, said earlier this month that he was “impressed” with those suggesting the climate agreement is not necessarily dead on arrival. The North Dakota Republican is one of Trump’s key energy advisers.
“I can imagine that the State Department likes the diplomacy of us being in it,” he told reporters, referring to what the congressman sees as the Paris deal’s primary advantages.
Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, for his part, has also indicated a willingness to stay in the agreement, telling reporters that it is reasonable for people to want to ratchet down carbon emissions.
“I can imagine that just as Americans want the issue of emissions to be dealt with, so does the world,” the former Exxon CEO said in February. Exxon is on record supporting a carbon tax and maintaining the Paris accord.
Calenda’s concerns originated after Trump began slashing regulations created by former President Barack Obama to adhere with aspects of the Paris agreement.
Trump signed a pair of executive orders earlier this month asking the EPA to review major regulations limiting carbon dioxide emissions from the Clean Power Plan (CPP). The order also repeals Obama-era global warming directives.
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