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UN chief urges action on climate change as Trump debates
December 18 2017, 06:32 | Irvin Gilbert
Leaving the deal would fulfill a central campaign pledge, but would certainly anger worldwide allies that spent years in hard negotiations that produced an accord to reduce carbon emissions. All signatories to the United Nationsclimate change treaty have signed onto the Paris accords except for Syria and Nicaragua.
The statement follows speculation that President Donald Trump may soon announce USA withdrawal from the Paris worldwide agreement of 2015 to reduce climate-warming carbon emissions.
The Paris agreement's commitment to curb carbon emissions and limit temperature rise to well below 2 degrees Celsius and as close as possible to 1.5 degrees "do not almost go far enough", he said. The US had previously committed to a goal of reducing carbon emissions by 26% to 28% by 2025. The agreement came into effect in November 2016.
"And so my argument today is that it is absolutely essential that the world implements the Paris Agreement, and that we fulfill that duty with increased ambition", Guterres said during his prepared address.
Trump famously, and controversially, somehow doesn't believe that climate change is real.
"We believe that it will be important for the USA not to leave the Paris agreement", said Guterres.
The meetings inside the West Wing had been contentious, sources told CNN, as aides expressed their deep grievances over the climate agreement that President Barack Obama helped broker with every country except Syria and Nicaragua. In the past, Trump has called climate change a hoax perpetrated by the Chinese government.
Mr. Trump's administration has already begun the process of killing Obama-era climate regulations.
Musk's resignation in protest could reflect a loss of faith in Trump by a key business leader, weakening the economic credibility Trump sought for his administration by appointing almost 20 powerful CEOs to a advisory council in December.
The president vowed a year ago to "cancel" the Paris Agreement as president, but his administration has repeatedly delayed making a final decision on the matter.
Within the White House, the divisions tend to break along increasingly-familiar lines: Scott Pruitt, the Environmental Protection Agency administrator, and chief strategist Steve Bannon favor pulling out, while Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, Director of the National Economic Council Gary Cohn and senior advisor Jared Kushner are all reportedly in favor of staying in.
Supporters of the climate pact are concerned that a USA exit could lead other nations to weaken their commitments or also withdraw, softening an accord that scientists have said is critical to avoiding the worst impacts of climate change.
And it shows Trump is unaffected by criticism from German Chancellor Angela Merkel, who said after Trump's visit last week to Europe that the continent would need to do more on its own, without America.