WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump says the Paris accord is more about other nations gaining a “financial advantage” over the U.S. than it is about climate change.
The president is speaking in the White House Rose Garden Thursday where he just announced America’s withdrawal from the Paris climate change accord.
Trump says, “This agreement is less about the climate and more about other countries obtaining a financial advantage over the United States.”
The president said the agreement gives “countries an economic edge over the United States,” adding, “that’s not going to happen while I’m president.”
He says that he is seeking to create a “level playing field” and establish the “highest standard of living, highest standard of environmental protection.”
Trump adds, “I was elected to represent the citizens of Pittsburgh, not Paris.”
Former President Barack Obama says the Trump administration is joining “a small handful of nations that reject the future” by withdrawing from the Paris climate change pact.
Obama is defending the deal that his administration painstakingly negotiated. He says the countries that stay in the Paris deal will “reap the benefits in “jobs and industries created.” He says the U.S. should be “at the front of the pack.”
The former president says in a statement that Trump’s decision reflects “the absence of American leadership.” But Obama says he’s confident nonetheless that U.S. cities, states and businesses will fill the void by taking the lead on protecting the climate.
Obama says that businesses have chosen “a low-carbon future” and are already investing heavily in renewable sources like wind and solar.
(© Copyright 2017 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)