Malaysiakini News

Pittsburgh mayor ‘appalled’ at Trump using city to justify Paris move

dpa  |  Published:  |  Modified:

The mayor of Pittsburgh says he is "appalled" that US President Donald Trump used his city to justify his "disastrous" decision to withdraw the United States from the Paris agreement on climate change.

"I'm appalled that the president used my city to justify his unacceptable decision, as most other Pittsburghers are," Mayor Bill Peduto said in a statement.

"I was one of the nation's mayors who went to Paris to fight for the accords, and my city, which has finally bounced back from decades of industrial carnage, will do all it can to promote its own environmental standards," he said.

Jobs in the renewable energy industry were the largest employer in the energy sector, he continued, adding: "If you are a mayor and not addressing shifts in changing weather patterns or preparing for the impacts of climate change, you aren't doing your job."

Meanwhile, environment group Greenpeace said Trump's decision to leave the Paris accord will cost his country its global leadership position and the economic benefits of the clean energy transition.

"Withdrawing from the Paris agreement will turn America from a global climate leader into a flat earth society of one. It is a morally-bankrupt decision that Trump will come to regret," Jennifer Morgan, Greenpeace's international executive director, said.

"Trump is surrendering US global leadership to real world leaders who are seizing the momentum to protect their country and the climate by transforming their economies to clean energy.

"We are witnessing a seismic shift in the global order as Europe, China and others lead the way forward."

The following are reactions from world leaders:

“This administration joins a small handful of nations that reject the future. ... The nations that remain in the Paris Agreement will be the nations that reap the benefits in jobs and industries created."

- Former US President Barack Obama

"A historic mistake. The world is moving forward together on climate change. Paris withdrawal leaves American workers & families behind."

- Former US Secretary of State and presidential candidate Hillary Clinton

"I regret the decision of the US president. Onward with all strength for global climate policy that preserves our planet." - German Chancellor Angela Merkel

"Make no mistake: on climate, there is no plan B, because there is no planet B."

- French President Emmanuel Macron

"The prime minister expressed her disappointment with the decision and stressed that the UK remained committed to the Paris Agreement, as she set out recently at the G7."

- Statement from British Prime Minister Theresa May's office

"Pulling out of the Paris climate deal is reckless and regressive. Instead of hand-holding, I'll work for a sustainable future for our planet."

- British opposition leader Jeremy Corbyn, making reference to an infamous photo of May and Trump hand-in-hand at the White House

"The President who promised ‘America First’ has taken a self-destructive step that puts our nation last. ... This is an unprecedented forfeiture of American leadership which will cost us influence, cost us jobs, and invite other countries to walk away from solving humanity's most existential crisis. It isolates the United States after we had united the world."

- Former US secretary of state John Kerry

"#climate we will not take steps back on Paris Agreement. Italy committed to reducing emissions, renewable energy, sustainable development."

- Italian Prime Minister Paolo Gentiloni

"Today is a sad day for the global community, as a key partner turns its back on the fight against climate change. The EU deeply regrets the unilateral decision by the Trump administration to withdraw the US from the Paris Agreement."

- European Union Delegation to the United States

"The decision by the United States to withdraw from the Paris Agreement on climate change is a major disappointment for global efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and promote global security. ... The transformation envisaged in the Paris Agreement is already underway."

- UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres, in a statement via his spokesman

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