Trump is expected to make a decision this week
The pact was agreed to under the Obama administration
President Donald Trump has signaled he’s ready to withdraw or dramatically alter the landmark Paris climate agreement ahead of an expected announcement this week, though he is still weighing a final decision amid new pressure from foreign governments, business leaders and members of his own party to remain committed to the carbon reduction pact.
In conversations with European leaders, western diplomats and aides during his first international trip, Trump indicated he was poised to honor his campaign commitments to either withdraw from the agreement altogether or make significant changes to the US carbon reduction goals that underpin its participation in the accord. The White House declined to say when Trump planned to make his intentions known, but officials familiar with the decision say an announcement could come as early as Wednesday.
Trump met Tuesday morning with EPA administrator Scott Pruitt to discuss the Paris climate agreement, press secretary Sean Spicer said. Pruitt has been a vocal proponent of withdrawing from the accord.
“He wants a fair deal for the American people,” Spicer said, adding Trump is spending a “great deal of time” considering the Paris agreement.
In his conversations with foreign leaders last week, Trump offered no final decision, saying he would take his counterparts’ arguments into account. And he did not specify what measures he might take to sever the United States’ pledge to the 195-nation agreement should he resolve to withdraw.
But there are virtually no signs he plans to remain in the agreement as it currently stands. Trump did not sign onto a joint statement at last week’s G-7 conference articulating support for the Paris accord. In the days since, he has lashed out at leaders who expressed disappointment in their climate conversations with him in Sicily. And according to aides, he has become increasingly convinced that taking formal steps to withdraw will demonstrate his commitment to an “America First” governing policy.
Trump tweeted as he departed the G-7 on Saturday that he planned to make a decision on Paris this week, and he has consulted with advisers and aides in the days since his return about the matter. Officials have laid out several options for him to decide between, including triggering a years-long withdraw process or putting the matter up for a vote in the US Senate.
Originally, the President had aimed to make a decision on Paris before arriving in Europe for his first summit talks with foreign leaders, but in mid-May the White House announced he was delaying a decision.
In talks with his foreign counterparts, the President kept an open mind on climate issues, according to his aides. But afterward, leaders said Trump offered few assurances he would uphold commitments to carbon reductions made under the Obama administration.