Published: Tue, April 18, 2017
Health Care | By Gwendolyn Kim

Trump advisers to meet Tuesday to discuss Paris climate agreement

Trump advisers to meet Tuesday to discuss Paris climate agreement

Corporate America's support of the Paris agreement on global warming should convince President Donald Trump to follow through with his promise to withdraw from the accords, say former top transition team officials.

"Scott Pruitt is probably the chief climate denier in America today", Schweiger said.

The battle over the future of President Obama's climate policies is heating up.

The meeting comes ahead of a summit of the Group of Seven wealthy nations in late May, which White House spokesman Sean Spicer said was the deadline for the decision.

President Trump's top advisers will meet Tuesday to contemplate withdrawing the US from the Paris climate accord, according to Reuters. President Trump boasts that America is once again open for business, and EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt's dismay regarding the Paris climate agreement reflects those sentiments.

Peabody Energy has consulted with White House officials, and Cloud Peak Energy Inc confirmed to Reuters it had told White House advisers it was in its interests for the United States to remain in the agreement to ensure there was a global role for high-efficiency coal plants.

Environmental groups want Washington to remain in the Paris agreement, even if the new administration weakens US pledges.

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Trump has already moved to dismantle a raft of Obama-era climate policies that would help the USA satisfy the commitment it made with more than 190 other nations to slash greenhouse gas emissions.

The Obama administration had promised the world that the United States would reduce its emissions by 26 to 28 per cent below its 2005 levels by the year 2025.

Pruitt, a former Oklahoma attorney general with close ties to the state's oil and gas industry, has labeled the agreement a "bad deal" in the past but had not previously called for the United States to withdraw from the accord. Given their apparent support for this agreement, it remains to be seen whether they will push back against Pruitt's remarks, potentially setting the White House up for yet another fight between centrist and conservative elements of the administration.

In 2015, the US agreed to the landmark climate treaty known as the Paris Agreement. A key argument is that the US can stay in the agreement without satisfying its pledge or maintaining regulations created to help achieve the target, said one administration official.

"The Paris agreement is created to undermine American self-government over the long term because the whole point of it is to put the United States inside a political pressure cooker" and influence domestic energy policy, said Marlo Lewis, a senior fellow at the Competitive Enterprise Institute.

Critics of the deal also warn that the US commitment could extend from Paris to the courtroom, seized by environmentalists as evidence the EPA is bound to regulate greenhouse gas emissions. That approach has won the endorsement of several major coal companies.

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