As the Trump administration debates whether to stay in the Paris climate agreement, observers are skeptical that opposing wings of the administration will reach a middle ground.
President Donald Trump reportedly is expected to meet with his senior advisers to decide whether the Unites States should stay in the Paris climate agreement.
The Paris agreement itself is really an array of individual, country-specific pledges, such as the USA promise to cut greenhouse gas emissions at least 26 percent from 2005 levels by 2025.
Some argue not pulling out the Paris agreement would be largely symbolic, since Trump's already begun to roll back Obama-era regulations aimed at reducing greenhouse gas emissions.
"The Paris Agreement is a hard-won achievement which is in keeping with the underlying trend of global development", Chinese President Xi Jinping said at the World Economic Forum earlier this year. The other advisers have yet to take an official stance.
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Conservatives alarmed by the corporate advocacy are stepping up their opposition, arguing that the potential global political benefits the USA may gain on the world stage by staying in the deal are outmatched by the political fallout Trump would experience at home. "And I think that's entirely appropriate because there is an expectation that when the US or any other country makes a promise, they're going to stand by that promise".
White House press secretary Sean Spicer recently told reporters Trump would make a decision on the agreement ahead of the Group of 7 leaders' meeting in late May. Trump has already scrapped the Clean Power Plan, the US emissions-reduction pledge under the Paris Agreement, and is expected to renege on USA financial commitments to fund innovative energy technologies and help developing countries mitigate climate change.
McKenna said a carbon tax seemed to be the only possible change to the U.S.'s commitments that would make them more ambitious and could also be construed as better for the economy.
"A carbon tax is a great answer if you never intend to run for office again", he said.
"Scott Pruitt is probably the chief climate denier in America today", Schweiger said. "They do require a global response". The oil and natural gas giant argued the US slashed its carbon emissions to 20-year lows because of greater use of natural gas, and "this success can be replicated globally" as part of the Paris deal.
Bannon and Pruitt are said to be strongly opposed to remaining in the agreement, while Kushner and Tillerson are said to be in favor of staying.
A White House spokeswoman did not immediately respond to a request for comment.