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Ignore Trump on climate

Ignore Trump on climate

He urged world leaders not to follow President Donald Trump's lead on climate change and declared his intention to help save an global agreement to reduce carbon emissions.

The White House has declined to comment on the interview.

The reason behind this sudden push to remain in an agreement that could negatively impact the fossil fuel industry has nothing to do with protecting the planet.

At the same time, if the USA were to stay in the Paris agreement while weakening the United States' commitments, that still would be a losing proposition for the nation, and the world, given that emissions need to be even more sharply curtailed than already planned.

Although Bloomberg avoided condemning the Trump's administration directly, he casted the President's approach on climate change as irrelevant.

Now, we're mildly heartened to learn that Trump also may be moving away from his ill-advised campaign pledge to withdraw the U.S. from the Paris climate agreement of 2015, under which almost 200 nations pledged to reduce emissions of the greenhouse gases that cause global warming.

Trump also has drawn a target on the Clean Power Plan, which was created to significantly reduce emissions from primarily coal-fired power-generating plants responsible for a third of the nation's greenhouse gases.

Perry said that some other countries, particularly Germany, aren't doing enough on climate change, while expecting the United States to do more.

"Climate treaties like the Paris agreement have little to do with climate". Under the agreement, the U.S. pledged that by 2025 it would reduce its annual greenhouse gas emissions by 26 to 28 per cent below 2005 levels, which would be a reduction of about 1.6 billion tons.

It's a bit of a surprise then that Energy Secretary said Tuesday that the USA should remain in the Paris Agreement while renegotiating the climate change pact.

"We are going to ensure that renewable energy finds its way to the grid", Perry said.

Obama helped recruit China to join the Paris climate agreement after the failed effort to broker a climate deal in Copenhagen in 2009.

There have been suggestions the U.S. could face trade tariffs if its greenhouse gas emissions are allowed to increase while the rest of the world makes substantial cuts. Even skeptics of climate change say that by remaining part of the deal the US can advocate American technology for producing power from coal with lower emissions. It also argues that it is a waste of money and threatens U.S. jobs. The U.S., on the other hand, has aggressively cut emissions by allowing natural gas to replace coal, Perry said. The country will march forward on its goal irrespective of Trump deciding to pull out of the Paris Agreement or not.

The writer is Visiting Professor of International Relations at Department of Defense and Strategic Studies, Quaid-i-Azam University, Islamabad, former president of the Islamabad Policy Research Institute and a former adviser at the COMSATS Institute of Information Technology, Islamabad.

Candidate Trump promised to "cancel" the Paris agreement.

But then there's the other faction that's led by Rex Tillerson, who has a lot of influence ... as secretary of state, who said we should stay in the agreement.

Remaining a party to the deal while flouting the US commitment "would turn the United States into a professional liar and hypocrite", said Mike McKenna, a strategist advising energy companies.

"But what I am going to say is, I think we probably need to renegotiate it", he said.


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