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'It doesn't fly': Macron rejects Trump offer to renegotiate Paris climate agreement

World leaders are meeting in Paris today – two years to the day since the deal was agreed.

FRENCH PRESIDENT EMMANUEL Macron has been reminding his US counterpart Donald Trump of his responsibility to history over his decision to quit the Paris climate change agreement, in an interview aired on US TV.

Speaking ahead of the  One Planet Summit, taking place in Paris two years to the day since 195 nations adopted the climate plan, Macron rejected the idea that Trump could negotiate a fresh deal and termed his withdrawal an “aggressive” manoeuvre.

Trump, confirming back in June that the US planned to withdraw from the climate accord, said he wanted to renegotiate the deal.

Speaking to CBS, the French president said:

I’m sorry to say that, it doesn’t fly, so, so sorry but I think it is a big responsibility in front of the history, and I’m pretty sure that my friend President Trump will change his mind in the coming months or years, I do hope.

He added:

“It’s extremely aggressive to decide on its own just to leave, and no way to push the others to renegotiate because one decided to leave the floor.

I’m not ready to renegotiate but I’m ready to welcome him if he decides to come back.

Asked about his relationship with the US president, Macron characterized it as “very direct,” adding he had been frank about his opposition to Washington recognising Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.

France Climate Summit Source: PHILIPPE WOJAZER

Two years on from the Paris Agreement, Macron is meeting with world leaders today, this time to talk about money.

Without trillions of dollars of investment in clean energy, the pact’s goal to keep global warming below two degrees Celsius over pre-industrial levels will remain a pipedream, observers and participants have warned.

Money has long been a sore point in the UN climate process, with developing nations insisting on financial assistance to help them make the costly move to less-polluting energy sources, and to shore up defences against climate change-induced superstorms, mega-droughts and sea level rises.

“We hope that this conference will be action first thing, particularly on providing financial support for the developing countries and small island developing countries and vulnerable countries,” former UN chief Ban Ki-moon told AFP ahead of the summit.

Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment Denis Naughten is representing Ireland at today’s gathering. A statement from his Department this morning said the minister would reaffirm “Ireland’s commitment to the global objectives set down by the Paris Agreement to significantly cut greenhouse gas emissions”.

A recent report by the Environmental Protection Agency said the evidence that Ireland is being impacted by climate change is becoming clearer than ever. Separately, former US Vice President Al Gore said the government here needed to “move more quickly” on climate change.

al Al Gore Source: Jensen Walker

Closer to home, a diverse array of speakers – including former President Mary Robinson and ESB Networks operations manager Derek Hynes – will address a Met Éireann symposium on “the challenges of future weather”.

Sessions will cover Climate Change, The Future of Forecasting and Responses to Weather Emergencies.

Director of Met Éireann Eoin Moran said Ireland needs to be well prepared for the challenges of future weather. A greater understanding of how changing climate will impact our weather and our society is also required, Moran said.

“For example, emergency managers are increasingly dependent on weather forecasts to make timely decisions and take appropriate actions before a high impact weather event hits, such as a storm or significant snowfall,” Moran said.

It is thus timely, as part of this symposium that we examine the nature of our weather and how to best support decisions needed to manage impacts of weather in an Irish context.

With reporting from © AFP 2017

Read: Tourists ‘gobsmacked’ by sight of polar bears crowded on Russian Arctic island >

Read: Ireland ranks worst in Europe for taking action against climate change >

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Daragh Brophy

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