Trump files notice with UN to withdraw US from Paris climate deal

Source: By Devin Henry, The Hill • Posted: Tuesday, August 8, 2017

The Trump administration issued a formal notice announcing the United States’ withdrawal from the Paris climate deal, the State Department said Friday.

The State Department sent the notice to the United Nations through diplomats, saying the U.S. intends to leave the deal “as soon as it is eligible to do so.”

“The United States supports a balanced approach to climate policy that lowers emissions while promoting economic growth and ensuring energy security,” the agency said.

Trump announced in June that he would pull the U.S. out of the climate accord, an international agreement written in 2015 to cut global greenhouse gas emissions.

Friday’s move is mostly ceremonial because, under the terms of the Paris deal, no country can formally announce its intention to pull out until Nov. 4, 2019, the three-year anniversary of when it came into force.

The formal process for withdrawing takes another year, meaning the earliest the U.S. can actually leave the Paris deal is Nov. 4, 2020 — one day after the next presidential election.

The Paris agreement is nonbinding, meaning Trump can continue to ignore the climate goals then-President Barack Obama pledged to follow when the deal was coming together. Obama pledged to reduce U.S. emissions by 26 percent to 28 percent by 2025.

When he announced his intention to pull out of the Paris deal, Trump said he would consider renegotiating the agreement in order to get one that is more favorable to the U.S. That proposal was rejected by other nations, including its key supporters in Europe and Asia.