World Leaders Decide They Don’t Need The U.S. To Move Forward On Climate Change

When it comes to the topic of climate change, other world leaders at the G20 summit in Hamburg have come to the conclusion that, since Donald Trump’s controversial decision to pull the U.S. out of the Paris climate accord, they can get along just fine as a G19.

At the summit’s conclusion, the leaders of the other 19 countries took into account Trump’s move to abandon the global climate agreement, and then signed off on a detailed blueprint for a new policy, the G20 Climate and Energy Action Plan for Growth, that outlines how their countries can meet their future goals on carbon emissions in the pact without the President of the United States. The move ended three days of tough negotiations of how to respond to Trump’s dubious June 1 decision.

“This is a clear indication that the U.S. has isolated itself on climate change once again, and is falling back while all other major economies step up and compete in the clean energy marketplace created by the Paris Agreement estimated to be worth over 20 trillion dollars,” said Andrew Light, a senior climate change adviser at the State Department under former President Barack Obama.

Initially, the G20 leaders had great difficulty in coming to an agreement on a common text on climate change, with America demanding a reference to fossil fuels. The climate section that was eventually signed off on took note of the US withdrawing from the Paris agreement, with other countries describing it as “irreversible,” yet also optimistically hinting that the country may one day buy back into the pact with references to the US approach to fossil fuels, stating, “The United States of America states it will endeavor to work closely with other countries to help them access and use fossil fuels more cleanly and efficiently.”

French President Emmanuel Macron said he would continue to put pressure on President Trump on the issue of climate change and may even hold a follow-up summit meeting in Paris in December to move the Paris deal forward.

Featured image via Ukas Michael – Pool/Getty Images