---- Editorial ----
Big blow to Paris climate deal
The fight against global warming received major jolt on Thursday as President Donald
Trump announced that he was pulling out US from the landmark Paris climate agreement.
The announcement has dealt a major blow to worldwide efforts to combat global warming.
It has also distanced US from its closest allies abroad. Scientists say Earth is
likely to reach more dangerous levels of warming sooner as a result of the president's
decision because America's pollution contributes so much to rising temperatures.
Calculations suggest withdrawal could result in emissions of up to 3 billion tons
of additional carbon dioxide a year - enough to melt ice sheets faster, raise seas
higher and trigger more extreme weather.
By abandoning the world's chief effort to slow the tide of planetary warming, Trump
was fulfilling a top campaign pledge after weeks of building up suspense over his
decision. The White House indicated it would follow the lengthy exit process outlined
in the deal. That means the US would remain in the agreement, at least formally,
for another three-and-a-half years, ensuring the issue remains alive in the next
presidential election. Under former President Barack Obama, the U.S. had agreed under
the accord to reduce polluting emissions by more than a quarter below 2005 levels
by 2025. But the national targets are voluntary, leaving room for the U.S. and the
nearly 200 other countries in the agreement to alter their commitments. The leaders
of France, Germany and Italy joined to "note with regret" the Trump decision and
express doubts about any change in the accord.
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