President Donald Trump’s administration is poised to announce the United States’ withdrawal from the Paris climate agreement, US media reported on Wednesday.
According to the Axios website, the first to break the news citing two sources with direct knowledge of the matter, Trump has reached a decision to pull out of the landmark deal on cutting global carbon emissions to curb global warming.
Several US media including CNN, CBS, ABC and Politico also reported that the White House was expected to announce a withdrawal from the 2015 accord once details of the process have been worked out.
The White House did not confirm the reports, while Trump restated that his decision would be announced this week.
“I will be announcing my decision on the Paris Accord over the next few days. MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN!” he tweeted.
An American pullout from the 196-nation Paris Agreement would deal a major blow to the so-called “climate diplomacy” which, less than 18 months ago, celebrated the historic pact made possible by a hard-fought agreement between Beijing and Washington, under president Barack Obama’s leadership.
The United States is the world’s biggest carbon emitter after China.
Under Trump, who once called climate change a “hoax,” Washington has resisted intense pressure from its partners to commit to respecting the global accord.
Since taking office on January 20, however, Trump has sent contradictory signals on the Paris deal — reflecting the different currents within his administration, on climate change but also on the wider issue of the United States’ role in the world and their relation to multilateralism.
The head of the Environmental Protection Agency Scott Pruitt has overtly advocated quitting a deal he judges “bad” for America.
But the corporate world has by and large come out in favor of staying in the accord. A dozen large groups including the oil major BP, agrochemical giant DuPont, Google, Intel and Microsoft, have urged Trump to remain part of the deal.
Under Obama, the United States had pledged to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 26-28 percent below 2005 levels by 2025.