AMY GOODMAN: This is Democracy Now!,,
the War and Peace Report, I’m Amy Goodman. President Donald Trump announced Thursday
he’ll withdraw the United States from the landmark Paris climate accord that was signed
by nearly 200 nations in 2015 and heralded as a rare moment of international collaboration
to avert imminent climate disaster. He spoke in the White House Rose Garden, surrounded
by supporters. PRESIDENT DONALD TRUMP: As of today, the United
States will cease all implementation of the nonbinding Paris accord and the draconian
financial and economic burdens the agreement imposes on our country. This includes ending the implementation of
the nationally determined contribution and, very importantly, the Green Climate Fund,
which is costing the United States a vast fortune. AMY GOODMAN: The United States is the world’s
second-largest emitter of greenhouse gases. As part of the accord, it had committed to
providing financial assistance for pollution controls in developing nations. By pulling out of the agreement, Trump stuck
to his campaign promise of putting America first. PRESIDENT DONALD TRUMP: I was elected to represent
the citizens of Pittsburgh, not Paris. It is time to put Youngstown, Ohio; Detroit,
Michigan; and Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania; along with many, many other locations within our
great country, before Paris, France. It is time to make America great again. AMY GOODMAN: In fact, the city of Pittsburgh
has a climate action plan committing to boosting the use of renewable energy, and Pittsburgh
Mayor Bill Peduto, a Democrat, has been an outspoken supporter of the Paris accord. He tweeted after Trump’s announcement, quote,
“As the Mayor of Pittsburgh, I can assure you that we will follow the guidelines of
the Paris Agreement for our people, our economy & future,” unquote. The response from world leaders was similarly
defiant. France joined Germany and Italy in issuing
a joint statement expressing “regret” and rejecting Trump’s claim he would renegotiate
the deal. French President Emmanuel Macron also responded
with a televised speech that marked the first time a French president has ever given a speech
in English from the Élysée Palace. PRESIDENT EMMANUEL MACRON: We will succeed,
because we are fully committed, because, wherever we live, whoever we are, we all share the
same responsibility: Make our planet great again. AMY GOODMAN: Meanwhile, Germany’s Chancellor
Angela Merkel pledged ongoing commitment to the Paris climate accord and said Trump’s
decision would not stop Germany from moving forward. CHANCELLOR ANGELA MERKEL: [translated] Germany
will support the Fiji Islands in preparing the next climate conference, and we will do
that together with France. Yesterday, I spoke with the French president,
Emmanuel Macron, about the Paris Agreement to the conference in November, which will
go further on the path of climate control. AMY GOODMAN: Now new diplomatic alliances
appear to be forming in the wake of Trump’s announcement, with Europe, India and China
all pledging to uphold their end of the deal. Chinese premier Li Keqiang joined with European
Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker at an EU-China summit in Brussels on Friday in
a show of solidarity. The former president of Ireland, Mary Robinson,
said Trump’s decision had turned the United States into “a rogue state.” Former Mexican President Vicente Fox tweeted,
the “United States has stopped being the leader of the free world.” On Twitter, critics noted in 2009 the Trump
family, including Donald Trump, took out a full-page ad in The New York Times urging
international action on climate change. Following Trump’s announcement, landmarks
in cities around the world were lit up green in support of the Paris climate accord. Here in New York City, demonstrators gathered
near City Hall to protest. MARITZA SILVA-FARRELL: Talking about climate
change isn’t an issue only about environmental justice. It’s an issue of racial justice. It’s an issue of economic justice. So, if Trump thinks that he is going to undermine
what we have been building here in New York City, he is wrong. PROTESTERS: Climate justice! PROTESTER 1: When do we want it? PROTESTERS: Now! PROTESTER 1: What do we want? PROTESTERS: Climate justice! PROTESTER 1: When do we want it? PROTESTERS: Now! SHAUN WILLIAMS: My name is Shaun Williams,
and I’m here with WE ACT for Environmental Justice. You look at his executive orders that he’s
signing and even with this Paris accord and pulling out of that, you see that everything
that he wants to do is taking us back into all of the things that we fought against and
that we fought to get out of. LOLA: My name is Lola. I am an organizer with NYU Divest. I’m a student at NYU. It’s not a—it’s not a valid argument,
the jobs argument, at all, especially because lives are at risk. Millions of lives are at risk. Refugees are at risk. PROTESTER 2: Now is the time to stop them. We need to stop them. We do not have much time. We do not have much time. CHARLOTTE BINNS: I’m Charlotte Binns. I’m with RENew York City, which is a powerful
movement to change the default energy supply to renewable for all of New York City. I think Trump is some kind of diabolical wake-up
call, because I’ve never seen so much civic engagement in my life, and I’ve never seen
so much local power, local government, stand up on issues that normally they don’t. PROTESTER 3: What do we want? PROTESTERS: Climate justice! PROTESTER 3: When do we want it? PROTESTERS: Now! PROTESTER 3: What do we want? PROTESTERS: Climate justice! PROTESTER 3: When do we want it? PROTESTERS: Now! VALERIE ROSS: If we stay out of that Paris
Agreement, what’s going to happen with the planet? There will be no one left. And, of course, the thing that’s complete
folly about this—Trump’s not thinking about this, whether it’s Trump, whether
it’s McConnell, the rest of them—what they’re not realizing is, they’re going
to go down, too. Last time I checked, there is no other planet
that’s capable of harboring life of any sort. This is it. This is it. My question is, frankly speaking: Trump, Bannon,
are you suicidal? Is that what this is? Because you’re going to go take—you’re
going to go, too. AMY GOODMAN: Some of the voices of protest
against President Trump’s announcement Thursday that he is withdrawing the United States out
of the landmark Paris climate accord. When we come back, we host a roundtable discussion
with climate scientist Michael Mann, climate activist Kumi Naidoo in South Africa, Asad
Rehman in London, and oil and energy journalist Antonia Juhasz joining us from California. This is Democracy Now! Back in a moment.