United States begins process of withdrawing from Paris climate deal

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President Donald Trump's White House has begun the process of formally withdrawing from the landmark Paris Climate Accord created to curb emissions and save the planet from climate change.

Rep. Jodey Arrington (R-Texas) on November 4 announced the introduction of H.Res. 676, legislation that encourages the United States to withdraw from the Paris deal.

Trump has been promising to pull out of the Paris deal since 2017, often mischaracterizing the terms of the agreement, which are voluntary. Agreement rules prevented a country from pulling out in the first three years after the November 4, 2016, ratification.

But since then the politics have changed: climate change is now one of the most-discussed issues in the 2020 presidential race and the vast majority of Americans say they support measures to reduce emissions, including the Paris Agreement.

"In response to that action, US governors from California, New York and Washington State launched the United States Climate Alliance to affirm their commitment to uphold the goals of the Agreement", said the alliance in a statement.

"Today, we begin the formal process of withdrawing from the Paris Agreement", Pompeo said via Twitter. To make the withdrawal even more politically fraught, the decision will take effect the day after the 2020 presidential election.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi released a statement, saying "Trump's shockingly reckless decision to formally pull the USA out of the Paris Climate Agreement is yet another disastrous anti-science, anti-government decision ..."

The talks are due to finalise the rulebook of the Paris accord and resolve contentious issues over how carbon credits can be traded between countries - technical discussions which are key to ensure carbon markets encourage additional emissions cut. November 4, 2019, marks two years since the worldwide agreement became official, and the official date that signatories would be allowed to back out under its agreements.

While all countries have subsequently become signatories to the agreement, they have yet to ramp up their commitment to match the overall goal.

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President Donald Trump went ahead with the pullout despite mounting evidence of the reality and impact of climate change, with September the fourth month in the row with near- or record-breaking temperatures.

That "We Are Still In" coalition has attended multiple United Nations meetings where they say the USA government delegation did not do enough and the group announced Monday members will attend the COP25 climate talks in Madrid later this year.

On the contrary, Senator Ted Cruz from Texas defended President Trump by saying the Paris agreement is unfair and "economically devastating".

He said that the United States will "continue to offer a realistic and pragmatic model" in global negotiations. It was supported by conservative organizations such as Americans for Tax Reform and FreedomWorks.

His views were echoed by others on the island community home to some 3,000 people, one of only three districts represented by a Republican in the 51-seat New York City Council.

It nearly goes without saying that there's a big problem with this rhetoric: it does not accurately reflect the urgency of addressing climate change.

The formal submission to withdraw from the decision was quickly met with condemnation from organizations and politicians. The move comes as climate change drives more frequent and severe wildfires, hurricanes and other hazards.

But even outside the agreement, the USA will continue to take part in the climate talks.

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