US President Donald Trump on Saturday announced that he will make a decision next week on whether US will follow the 2015 Paris agreement on cutting global carbon emissions. Trump took to Twitter to make the announcement: “I will make my final decision on the Paris Accord next week!” He was at the G7 summit in Sicily when he made the announcement.
The United States is the world’s biggest carbon emitter after China. President Trump is yet to take any decision on his campaign threat to sideline the Paris accord. At the same time, US partners’ advice to Trump on the issue is crucial before he can take any decision on how to proceed after the G7. For Europe and China, abandoning the Paris agreement carries a high political costs because the deal is considered to be a bedrock for action on climate change, according to analysts.
It would also be fiercely opposed at home by the US environment lobby and by American corporations that are now investing heavily in cleaner technology. But while officials signalled some progress on bridging differences about trade with the protectionist Trump, differences on the climate issue remained irreconcilable.
Meanwhile, German Chancellor Angela Merkel said at the conclusion of the G7 summit that the debate over climate change had been “very unsatisfying”, observing that the United States had been totally isolated in its refusal to commit to the 2015 Paris climate agreement. “The entire discussion about climate was very difficult, if not to say very dissatisfying,” Merkel told reporters. “There are no indications whether the United States will stay in the Paris Agreement or not.”