EU ignores Washington and seeks direct climate cooperation with US states

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The US is slowly withdrawing from the Paris agreement, but the rest of the world’s not having it.

Last week, the European Union and China released a joint statement declaring their intentions to move on with the Agreement with or without America. They were clearly referring to just the Executive Branch, however, as now they’ve decided to work with US states and cities that are keen on cutting their carbon footprint by going over the President’s weirdly coiffed head.

“Strong transatlantic ties are far more important and far more durable than the latest unfortunate decisions of the new administration,” EU President Donald Tusk said at the end of an EU-China summit in Brussels.

Rebuffing Trump’s suggestion that the climate accords could be “renegotiated,” EU officials have decided to cut out the White House entirely, and will instead deal directly with Governors, mayors, and CEOs of major corporations. This will include the Climate Alliance, a growing bipartisan group of states that have vowed to uphold the terms of the accord.

The official statement also included the ambition of working even more closely with Canada, another nation that reacted defiantly to the Trump administration’s recent decision.

At the same time, China and the EU have vowed to make sure that the Green Climate Fund – donations from wealthy nations to help poorer countries meet their carbon-cutting targets – will be maintained, despite America’s refusal to pay. By 2020, they will be paying $100bn a year into the fund, something that is essential for the survival of low-income nations.

“The decision of the United States to pull out of the Paris agreement is utterly regrettable, and that is me choosing very restrained language,” Angele Merkel, Germany’s Chancellor, added.

“This is why it is necessary now after this announcement by the US administration yesterday evening, to turn our attention to the future.”