Emerging nations urge rich to kick-start climate pact before 2020

Posted November 09, 2017

The attendees of the United Nations (UN) climate talks yesterday (Nov 7) witnessed a historical moment when Syria announced that it will become a signatory of the Paris Climate Agreement - subsequently isolating the United States, who abandoned the framework that was created to tackle climate change in June of this year. Nicaragua, which was one of the last holdouts, in September announced it would join the accord.

President Donald Trump said in June that the United States would withdraw from the accord, saying it put the country at a disadvantage.

In June the U.S. said it would withdraw, but the rules of the agreement state that this can not be done until 2020.

Overall, the Paris agreement seeks to limit a global rise in temperatures to "well below" two degrees Celsius above pre-industrial times, ideally 1.5.

And while Syria was not present for the initial climate negotiations, the country's Deputy Minister of Local Administration and Environment, M. Wadah Katmawi, said that it too will now ratify the accord, during a meeting at the start of the COP23 climate change conference in Bonn, Germany.

The tweet attracted dozens of complaints from other Twitter users, many of them pointing to the widely suspected use of chemical weapons by the regime of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.

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President Trump announced in June that he would pull out of the climate agreement to put "America First."

This makes the United States the only country on the planet not a part of the climate deal.

A French diplomatic official said the countries whose heads of state are being invited are those who are "especially committed" to applying the Paris accord.

According to Trump, the Paris accord would have cost the United States 6.5mil jobs and US$3tn GDP in lost, whilst conveying that the accord favours economy rivals in China and India. "So everyone has joined and the U.S.is now so isolated".

The move leaves the U.S., which caused an global outcry in June when Trump announced plans to pull out of the pact, the world's sole hold-out.

The same day, Macron said "wherever we live, whoever we are, we all share the same responsibility: make our planet great again" and called on USA -based scientists to come to France to work on climate-related issues, in an unprecedented English-language speech from the French presidential palace.