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Mr Trump claimed the agreement was not created to protect the environment but to “kill” the American economy. He said: “The Paris Accord was not designed to save the environment, it was designed to kill the American economy.
“I refuse to surrender millions of American jobs and send trillions of American dollars to the world’s worst polluters and environmental offenders.”
According to the Associated Press, the US President said: “To protect American workers, I withdrew the United States from the unfair and one-sided Paris climate Accord, a very unfair act for the United States.”
The Paris Agreement, was signed in 2015 by parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC).
It outlines key actions to be taken against climate change and in order to reduce carbon emissions.
According to the United Nations’ official website, the accord “builds upon the Convention and – for the first time – brings all nations into a common cause to undertake ambitious efforts to combat climate change and adapt to its effects, with enhanced support to assist developing countries to do so”.
Despite some internal opposition from officials in his administration, Mr Trump withdrew the US as a party to the agreement in his first year of presidency in 2017.
He announced the news in a statement during an afternoon event held in the White House’s Rose Garden.
At the time, he said: “As President, I can put no other consideration before the wellbeing of American citizens.
“The Paris Climate Accord is simply the latest example of Washington entering into an agreement that disadvantages the United States to the exclusive benefit of other countries, leaving American workers — who I love — and taxpayers to absorb the cost in terms of lost jobs, lower wages, shuttered factories, and vastly diminished economic production.
“Thus, as of today, the United States will cease all implementation of the non-binding Paris Accord and the draconian financial and economic burdens the agreement imposes on our country.
“This includes ending the implementation of the nationally determined contribution and, very importantly, the Green Climate Fund which is costing the United States a vast fortune.”
Mr Trump’s decisions to pull out from the accord, which was not fulfilled until this month, has sparked fears of tensions with European and Asian allies.
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However, President-elect Joe Biden has vowed to re-enter the accord after he is sworn in.
He confirmed his intention to re-join the pact in a tweet sent earlier on November 5 as it was revealed the US had left it.
He wrote: “Today, the Trump Administration officially left the Paris Climate Agreement. And in exactly 77 days, a Biden Administration will rejoin it.”
According to Nigel Purvis, a former US climate negotiator for Bill Clinton and George W Bush, Mr Biden will be able to re-enter the agreement on his first day in office as congressional authorisation is not needed.
Under the Paris Agreement, the US must outline its own voluntary aims for reducing greenhouse gases.
Member nations must also steadily increase those targets every few years with the common framework being to maintain the increase in average global temperatures “well below” 2C compared to pre-industrial levels.
The only binding requirement for member countries is to accurately report on their progress toward their targets.
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