Sci-tech

EPA Chief Scott Pruitt Calls for 'Exit' of Paris Climate Agreement

EPA Chief Scott Pruitt Calls for 'Exit' of Paris Climate Agreement

During his presidential campaign, Donald Trump was a prominent critic of the deal, promising to "cancel" it, and this week he refused to sign a statement endorsing the agreement. And, what is a politically viable US climate policy in the long-term? "If Trump allows this deal to go forward, he will unwittingly fulfil Hillary Clinton's arrogant and dastardly promise to put every coal miner in America out of a job".

The Paris Agreement is within the UN's Framework Convention on Climate Change dealing with greenhouse gasses emissions reduction, adaptation, and finance starting in 2020.

Amid this uncertainty, the statement aligns Mr Pruitt with a more hard-line approach held by some in the Trump administration, rather than the more moderate take of Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, who had said in his confirmation hearing that the USA should have a "seat at the table" in the Paris negotiations.

Trump and his administration are working to repeal almost all of Obama's climate agenda, including the Clean Power Plan, which represented the bulk of the policies to reach the goal.

The Obama administration joined the accords past year without Senate approval, committing the U.S.to cut greenhouse gas emissions 26 to 28 percent by 2025. The Trump administration could simply revise that pledge and make it less ambitious, and easier to attain.

But with the Paris accord, China said that, compared to 2005 levels, it would seek to cut its carbon emissions by 60 to 65 percent per unit of GDP by 2030. The reason is more burning of natural gas, rather than coal, and a growing profusion of renewables.

Environmental Protection Agency chief Scott Pruitt said Thursday during an appearance on Fox and Friendsthat the United States should exit the Paris climate agreement because the accord only serves the interests of Europe, China and India.

Since taking office, Trump has revoked a range of environmental legislation-including Barack Obama's climate orders-with a plan to focus on energy independence and revitalize the coal industry. The Clean Power Plan predates the Paris deal and was not legally based on any global commitment.

Last week, Pruitt, a former Oklahoma Attorney General, said the United States should "exit" the agreement because it was a "bad deal" for the country.


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