Trump to Sign Executive Order Undoing Obama Cuts in Power Plant Emissions

Posted March 28, 2017

Pruitt on Sunday called the Paris climate accord a "bad deal" because he said it went too easy on China and India, who like the US are among the world's leading producers of carbon dioxide.

Scott Pruitt, who as Oklahoma's Attorney-General repeatedly sued the organisation he now leads, told United States broadcaster ABC that China and India had "got away scot-free" under the terms of the deal and said the USA had "penalised ourselves through lost jobs".

China is the largest emitter of greenhouse gases on the planet, followed by the United States, the European Union as a bloc and then India.

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Trump, who has called climate change a hoax, has vowed to reorient the government so that USA oil and coal producers thrive and steel and auto manufacturers don't face "job-killing restrictions". Many countries, including China and India, have submitted sweeping plans to curb emissions within the next few decades. "They didn't have to take steps until 2030", he said. "Paris was just a bad deal, in my estimation".

His complaints about China's and India's carbon dioxide emissions are perhaps a little odd, given he only recently denied the gas was a primary cause of global warming.

However Mr Pruitt gave a hint that the Trump administration might decide against withdrawing from Paris, for the moment at least.

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EPA chief Scott Pruitt said the executive order to be signed Tuesday will undo the Obama Admin's Clean Power Plan, an environmental regulation that restricts greenhouse gas emissions at coal-fired power plants.

U.S. President Donald Trump is set to sign an executive order that will remove environmental protections put in place by former president Barack Obama's administration, according to the new head of the country's Environmental Protection Agency.

Obama's Clean Power Plan was created to cut carbon dioxide emissions from electricity by 32 percent by 2030 compared to 2005 levels. "So our actions, starting on Tuesday, shortly after the executive order, will make sure that whatever steps we take in the future will be pro-growth, pro-environment, but within the framework of the Clean Air Act, and it will be legal".

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Mr Pruitt's assessment of the Paris Agreement is markedly different from Mr Obama's.