Trump announces US pull out from climate pact

Published: Jun. 1, 2017 at 7:14 AM EDT
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The Latest on Donald Trump and climate change (all times local):

5 p.m.

The leaders of France, Germany and Italy say the Paris climate accord cannot be renegotiated as President Donald Trump has demanded.

French President Emmanuel Macron, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Italian Premier Paolo Gentiloni said in a joint statement Thursday that they take note "with regret" the U.S. decision to pull out of the 2015 agreement.

The three leaders say they regard the accord as "a cornerstone in the cooperation between our countries, for effectively and timely tackling climate change."

They added that the course charted by the accord is "irreversible and we firmly believe that the Paris Agreement cannot be renegotiated."

Macron, Merkel and Gentiloni say they remain committed to the deal and will "step up efforts" to support the poorest and most threatened nations.


5 p.m.

Microsoft's President Brad Smith tweeted that the company is "disappointed" by President Donald Trump's withdrawal from the Paris climate agreement. Smith says Microsoft will keep working to achieve the accord's goals.

In an emailed statement, retail giant Amazon says it also still supports the climate agreement, and that clean-energy policies are good for American jobs and innovation.


4:55 p.m.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel says she regrets President Donald Trump's decision to pull out of the Paris climate accord.

Her spokesman, Steffen Seibert, said Thursday on Twitter that Merkel would continue to put all efforts into climate policy "to save our Earth."

Social Democratic members of Merkel's Cabinet issued a separate joint statement saying "the United States is harming itself, us Europeans and all other people in the world."

The ministers, including Germany's top diplomat Sigmar Gabriel, said Trump's move threatened economic growth and technical progress.

They called the decision "a political error, because it calls the international reliability of treaties into question."

The ministers said they would "keep the door open" for the U.S. to rejoin the Paris accord again.


4:50 p.m.

Congressional Republicans are applauding President Donald Trump's decision to withdraw from the Paris climate accord, but Democrats are slamming the decision.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell says Trump has "put families and jobs ahead of left-wing ideology and should be commended."

House Speaker Paul Ryan says that "the Paris climate agreement was simply a raw deal for America."

But Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer of New York says the move is "a devastating failure of historic proportions" - and "one of the worst policy moves made in the 21st century."

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi of California says it's "a stunning abdication of American leadership and a grave threat to our planet's future."


4:50 p.m.

Energy Secretary Rick Perry says President Donald Trump's decision to withdraw from the Paris climate agreement means the U.S. "will no longer be bound by an agreement unilaterally entered into by the Obama administration."

Perry is a former Texas governor. He says that instead of preaching about clean energy, the Trump administration will act on it.

Perry adds: "Our work and deeds are more important than empty words. I know you can drive economic growth and protect the environment at the same time, because that is exactly what I did as governor of Texas."

Perry is on a nine-day trip to Japan and China. He said from Tokyo that the U.S. will continue to develop "next generation technology" in energy, including nuclear energy, liquefied natural gas and renewables such as wind and solar power.


4:40 p.m.

President Donald Trump has lost the support of a top billionaire business leader over his decision to withdraw from the Paris climate deal.

Elon Musk writes on Twitter that he is "departing presidential councils," something he had vowed to do if Trump took this step. Musk writes: "Climate change is real. Leaving Paris is not good for America or the world."

Musk is the founder of SpaceX and Tesla among other companies. He's been a member of Trump's infrastructure council, manufacturing jobs council and strategic and policy forum.

General Electric CEO Jeff Immelt, another member of Trump's business councils, writes on Twitter that he is "disappointed" with Trump's decision on Paris.

Says Immelt, "Industry must now lead and not depend on government."


4:40 p.m.

Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke is applauding President Donald Trump's decision to withdraw from the Paris climate agreement. His reaction comes a day after Zinke said he could not comment on the accord because he had not read it.

Zinke said Thursday during a visit to Alaska that "America's energy and economic destiny should be up to the United States, not the United Nations."

Zinke praised Trump for taking "bold and decisive action to pull the U.S. out of the poorly negotiated Paris accord that would kill American jobs and manufacturing while doing little to protect the environment."

Zinke told reporters Wednesday that he has "yet to read what the actual Paris agreement is" and "would like to sit down and read" the 2015 accord before commenting.


4:35 p.m.

John Kerry says President Donald Trump has taken "a self-destructive step" that puts America last.

The former secretary of state is a co-signer of the Paris climate accord. He released a statement Thursday following Trump's decision to withdraw the U.S. from the agreement.

Kerry says it's "an unprecedented forfeiture of American leadership which will cost us influence, cost us jobs and invite other countries to walk away from solving humanity's most existential crisis."

Kerry called the decision "an ignorant, cynical appeal to an anti-science, special-interest faction far outside the mainstream."

Kerry signed the agreement at the U.N. in 2016 with his granddaughter seated on his lap.

He says, "That is no basis for a decision that will affect billions of lives."


4:35 p.m.

Former Mexican President Vicente Fox is harshly criticizing President Donald Trump for withdrawing the United States from the Paris climate agreement.

Fox has clashed with Trump since last year's presidential campaign, and he let loose Thursday with a series of tweets saying the decision "condemns this generation and those to come."

Fox tweets of Trump: "He's declaring war on the planet itself."

He accused Trump of "leaving a dark legacy just to satisfy your greediness" and surrendering the nation's future.

Fox concludes: "United States has stopped being the leader of the free world. realDonaldTrump, single handed, took care of that."


4:20 p.m.

Mayors from major cities around the world say they remain committed to the Paris climate accord despite President Donald Trump's decision to pull out of the deal.

In a statement Thursday, mayors of the world's megacities committed to addressing climate change said that despite the U.S. move, American cities can continue to play a role in trying to prevent catastrophic global warming.

The mayor of Paris, Anne Hidalgo, says climate change "poses a unique threat to the future of our planet, and puts in peril the health, prosperity, security and the very survival of our children and grandchildren."

Hidalgo says she's urging the Trump administration to reconsider the decision.

Steve Adler, the mayor of Austin, Texas, said his city won't stop fighting climate change.


4:20 p.m.

The European Union's top climate change official says President Donald Trump's decision to pull out of the Paris accord makes it "a sad day for the global community."

The EU's climate action commissioner, Miguel Arias Canete, said in a statement Thursday that the bloc "deeply regrets the unilateral decision by the Trump administration."

Canete says the 2015 accord is "ambitious yet not prescriptive."

He says the agreement will endure, and he pledged that "the world can continue to count on Europe for global leadership."

Canete also predicted that the EU would seek new alliances from the world's largest economies to the most vulnerable island states, as well as U.S. businesses and individuals supportive of the accord.

He added: "We are on the right side of history."


4:20 p.m.

Norway's largest pension fund, Storebrand, says it will continue to invest in renewable energy despite President Donald Trump's decision to pull out of the Paris climate accord.

Storebrand says "the transition toward a greener economy in the U.S. will not stop due to withdrawing from the Paris agreement."

The fund, which has 53 billion euros ($59.5 billion) in assets under management, said in a statement Thursday that "Donald Trump is jumping off a train that has already left the station."

Chief executive Odd Arild Grefstad cited the growth of renewable energy in states such as Texas, New York and California as signs that "the world has started the transition from fossil to a renewable economy."

He added: "We will continue to invest accordingly."


4:15 p.m.

Former Vice President Al Gore is calling the decision to exit the Paris agreement "a reckless and indefensible action."

Gore says the move "undermines America's standing in the world." He released the statement as President Donald Trump was speaking at the White House Rose Garden.

The former vice president has defined his postgovernment life as a climate champion. He urges mayors, governors and the business community to take up where Trump is leaving off, especially by focusing on clean energy.

Gore says: "We are in the middle of a clean energy revolution that no single person or group can stop. President Trump's decision is profoundly in conflict with what the majority of Americans want from our president."


4:10 p.m.

The U.S. Conference of Mayors says it strongly opposes President Donald Trump's decision to withdraw from the Paris climate accord and vows that the nation's mayors will continue efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions blamed for global warming.

The mayors said in a statement Thursday that the U.S. and other nations need to address climate change to become energy independent, self-reliant and resilient.

New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu, the group's vice president, called climate change a grave threat to coastal communities, the nation and the world. He said that if unchecked, sea-level rise caused by climate change could mean that New Orleans and other coastal cities "will cease to exist."

Landrieu said withdrawal from the Paris agreement "is shortsighted and will be devastating to Americans in the long run."


4 p.m.

President Donald Trump says the Paris accord is more about other nations gaining a "financial advantage" over the U.S. than it is about climate change.

The president is speaking in the White House Rose Garden Thursday where he just announced America's withdrawal from the Paris climate change accord.

Trump says, "This agreement is less about the climate and more about other countries obtaining a financial advantage over the United States."

The president said the agreement gives "countries an economic edge over the United States," adding, "that's not going to happen while I'm president."

He says that he is seeking to create a "level playing field" and establish the "highest standard of living, highest standard of environmental protection."

Trump adds, "I was elected to represent the citizens of Pittsburgh, not Paris."


3:55 p.m.

President Donald Trump says the United States will immediately cease "all implementation" of Paris climate change accord standards.

Trump announced Thursday that the United States is withdrawing from the landmark 190-nation agreement to reduce earth-warming gases.

The president said that the nation would stop adhering to the emissions reductions standards immediately. The agreement was nonbinding.

Trump painted the original deal as "unfair" to American workers and taxpayers, suggesting that other countries had more favorable agreements.

He also said that the United States would be willing to re-enter the deal on "better terms."


3:50 p.m.

President Donald Trump has announced that the U.S. will withdraw from the Paris climate agreement, but will begin negotiations to "re-enter either the Paris accord or an entirely new transaction."

Trump says during a White House Rose Garden announcement that the U.S. will exit the landmark climate agreement aimed at reducing carbon emissions to slow climate change.

Trump says the deal "disadvantages" the U.S. and is causing lost jobs and lower wages.

The announcement fulfills one of Trump's top campaign pledges. But it also undermines world efforts to combat global warming.

The U.S. had agreed under former President Barack Obama to reduce emissions to 26 percent to 28 percent of 2005 levels by 2025 - about 1.6 billion tons.


3:50 p.m.

President Donald Trump is offering the thoughts and prayers of the American people to those affected by an attack at a tourist resort in the Philippines.

Trump says Thursday that "it is really very sad as to what's going on throughout the world with terror."

Speaking in the White House Rose Garden, Trump says he is "closely monitoring the situation" and will continue to provide updates.

Gunshots and explosions rang out early Friday at a mall, casino and hotel complex near Manila's international airport in the Philippine capital, sparking a security alarm amid an ongoing Muslim militant siege in the country's south.

Trump says, "Our thoughts and our prayers and with all of those affected."


3:45 p.m.

Former President Barack Obama says the Trump administration is joining "a small handful of nations that reject the future" by withdrawing from the Paris climate change pact.

Obama is defending the deal that his administration painstakingly negotiated. He says the countries that stay in the Paris deal will "reap the benefits in "jobs and industries created." He says the U.S. should be "at the front of the pack."

The former president says in a statement that Trump's decision reflects "the absence of American leadership." But Obama says he's confident nonetheless that U.S. cities, states and businesses will fill the void by taking the lead on protecting the climate.

Obama says that businesses have chosen "a low-carbon future" and are already investing heavily in renewable sources like wind and solar.


3:40 p.m.

Vice President Mike Pence says President Donald Trump is "choosing to put American jobs and American consumers first" with his announcement that the U.S. will withdraw from the Paris accord.

Pence introduced Trump in the Rose Garden Thursday. Trump is expected to announce that the U. S. will withdraw from the Paris global climate pact. That's according to a White House official, congressional officials and others briefed by the White House.

Pence praised Trump's leadership and said Trump is "is choosing to put the forgotten men and women of America first."

Abandoning the pact was one of Trump's principal campaign pledges.


2: 45 p.m.

President Donald Trump will announce that the United States is withdrawing from the Paris climate change accord.

That's according to multiple congressional officials and others briefed by the White House on the decision.

According to those briefed, Trump will argue that the Paris pact is a bad deal for American workers and was poorly negotiated by the Obama administration.

Those briefed by the White House insisted on anonymity in order to discuss the matter ahead of Trump's announcement Thursday afternoon in the Rose Garden.


2:35 p.m.

Five Nordic countries have written a last-minute letter to President Donald Trump urging him to "make the right decision" and keep America signed onto the Paris climate accord.

The leaders of Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden say the 2015 Paris Agreement to reduce global warming was a commitment "to our children."

In a letter sent hours before Trump was due to announce on Thursday whether the U.S. would pull out of the accord, the five leaders say the effects of global warming are already visible in all parts of our planet.

They say it's "crucial.. that all parties stick to the Paris Agreement."

The letter is signed "Your Nordic Friends" and urges Trump "to show global leadership - and to make the right decision."


7:45 a.m.

The Kremlin says Russia is committed to the Paris climate change accords.

Speaking to reporters on Thursday, a spokesman for President Vladimir Putin, Dmitry Peskov, said that Russia "thinks highly" of the accords and there is no alternative to it. But he added that its implementation will not be as effective "without the key signatories." Peskov said Russia has yet to see what announcement Trump makes.

Putin is meeting with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi later on Thursday. Modi on Wednesday expressed India's commitment to fighting climate change and said it would be a "crime" to spoil the environment for future generations.


5:13 a.m.

Chinese Premier Li Keqiang says fighting climate change is a "global consensus" and an "international responsibility."

Speaking in Berlin about the Paris climate change accord, he said that "China in recent years has stayed true to its commitment."

Without mentioning the U.S. specifically, he said China has been "actively promoting the Paris agreement and we were one of the first countries to ratify the Paris agreement."

He added: "Fighting climate change is a global consensus, it's not invented by China... and we realize that this is a global consensus agreement and that as a big developing nation we should shoulder our international responsibility."


4:45 a.m.

China says it will work with the European Union to uphold the international agreement on climate change even if the U.S. pulls out.

President Donald Trump is expected to announce his decision on whether to abandon the Paris climate accord Thursday.

While not mentioning the U.S. by name, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying tells reporters climate change is a "global challenge" that no country can ignore.

At a regularly scheduled news conference Thursday, Hua said: "No matter whether other countries' positions may change, we will continue to uphold" a model of sustainable development. China is the top emitter of man-made carbon dioxide emissions, and the United States is second.


3:40 a.m.

President Donald Trump will announce his decision on whether to pull the United States out of the Paris climate accord during a Rose Garden event Thursday afternoon.

Trump promoted his announcement Wednesday night on Twitter, after a day in which U.S. allies around the world sounded alarms about the likely consequences of a U.S. withdrawal. Trump himself kept everyone in suspense, saying he was still listening to "a lot of people both ways."

The White House signaled that Trump was likely to decide on exiting the global pact - fulfilling one of his principal campaign pledges - though top aides were divided. And the final decision may not be entirely clear-cut: Aides were still deliberating on "caveats in the language," one official said.

Everyone cautioned that no decision was final until Trump announced it. The president has been known to change his thinking on major decisions and tends to seek counsel from both inside and outside advisers, many with differing agendas, until the last minute.

(Copyright 2017 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

6/1/2017 3:40:56 PM (GMT -4:00)