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The Trump administration may not remove the United States from the Paris Agreement, a historic and vital 195 nation accord to reduce dangerous greenhouse gases.
In June, Donald Trump announced that the United States would withdraw from the agreement, an expected move on his part. Saturday afternoon, however, over three months later, the Wall Street Journal is reporting that the Trump administration will not withdraw after all.
“Trump administration officials said Saturday the U.S. wouldn’t pull out of the Paris Agreement, offering to re-engage in the international deal to fight climate change, according to the European Union’s top energy official,” the outlet reported. “The shift from President Donald Trump’s decision in June to renegotiate the landmark accord or craft a new deal came during a meeting of more than 30 ministers led by Canada, China and the European Union.”
The Agence France-Presse (AFP), an international news agency headquartered in Paris, didn’t go quite as far, however, reporting that “a US envoy has signaled that President Donald Trump may be ready to soften his stance on the Paris climate pact.” The outlet cited a European official at a summit in Canada. The country is hosting 30 environment ministers today, aiming to push forward on the Paris climate accord in Montreal.
Per the AFP:
The United States "stated that they will not renegotiate the Paris Accord, but they try to review the terms on which they could be engaged under this agreement," said the European Union's top climate official Miguel Arias Canete.
He said there would be a meeting on the sidelines of next week's UN General Assembly with American representatives "to assess what is the real US position," but noted "it's a message which is quite different to the one we heard from President Trump in the past."
Environment ministers from some 30 countries gathered in Montreal on Saturday to push forward on implementing the Paris climate deal without the US.
The United States was represented only by an observer, who was not immediately available for comment.
Glenn Thrush of the New York Times, via Twitter, said that a White House spokesperson denied the claims:
WH spox denies WSJ story claiming US might stay in Paris accords -- saying position hasn't changed...— Glenn Thrush (@GlennThrush) September 16, 2017
NBC’s Kelly O’Donnell advised the same:
NEW: WH officials say "NO CHANGE" on US position regarding Paris Agreement on climate change after report.— Kelly O'Donnell (@KellyO) September 16, 2017
Deputy Press Secretary Lindsay Walter further denied the report. Per BuzzFeed News:
MSNBC’s Joy Reid may have put it best:
What is going on in the White House...? Trump Administration Won’t Withdraw From Paris Climate Deal https://t.co/jp8izRUVzG— Joy Reid (@JoyAnnReid) September 16, 2017
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