Trump Sets Deadline For His Decision On The Paris Climate Agreement

REUTERS/Alessandro Bianchi

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Michael Bastasch DCNF Managing Editor
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President Donald Trump will make a decision next week on whether or not he will keep his campaign promise to withdraw the U.S. from the Paris climate agreement.

Trump tweeted out Saturday morning he would make an announcement next week. The Obama administration joined the United Nations agreement in 2016 without the advice and consent of the Senate.

Conservative groups made a final plea to Trump in May to keep his campaign promise to withdraw from the Paris accords. Republican lawmakers and attorneys general added their voices to calls to ditch the Paris agreement, arguing a failure to withdraw would imperil Trump’s agenda.

On the other side, European leaders — and even Pope Francis — urged Trump to stick with the Paris agreement while the president attended the G7 summit. French President Emmanuel Macron said he had a “extremely direct and very frank” conversation with Trump about the Paris agreement when they met Thursday.

White House economic adviser Gary Cohn said Trump is listening to European leaders about the importance of the Paris agreement, but added that if faced with a choice between growing the economy and fighting global warming, Trump will choose the economy.

“If it comes to a choice between measures to curtail global warming under the 2015 Paris climate accord and growing the U.S. economy, economic considerations would prevail,” Cohn told reporters on Air Force One Thursday.

Cohn personally favors staying in the Paris agreement, which went into effect in 2016. He’s joined by Ivanka Trump, Jared Kushner and Secretary of State Rex Tillerson. White House chief strategist Steve Bannon and EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt oppose the Paris agreement.

Democratic lawmakers appealed to Trump to stay party to the Paris agreement in a letter sent Wednesday. Environmentalists also want Trump to stick with the Paris agreement, but say participation will largely be symbolic since the administration has already begun rolling back domestic regulations to cut greenhouse gas emissions.

Trump’s issued executive orders to roll back regulations put in place by the Obama administration, including major global warming regulations on power plants and oil and gas operations.

Emissions cuts made under the Paris agreement are not legally binding, and the previous administration argued the Senate did not need to approve U.S. participation. The Obama administration pledged to cut U.S. greenhouse gas emissions 26 to 28 percent below 2005 levels by 2025.

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