With former president Barack Obama's climate legacy in tatters, moments ago the ex-president issued a scathing statement, slammed the Trump administration for "rejecting the future", and that "in the absence of American leadership", unlike the "steady, principled American leadership " under Obama, the former president urged "states, cities, and businesses" to "step up and do even more to lead the way, and help protect for future generations the one planet we've got."
"The nations that remain in the Paris Agreement will be the nations that reap the benefits in jobs and industries created," Obama said. "I believe the United States of America should be at the front of the pack."
Trump announced on Thursday that the U.S would leave the 195-nation agreement, his firmest rebuke yet of Obama-era environmental policies and the fulfillment of a key campaign promise.
Statement from President Barack Obama on the Paris Climate Agreement:
A year and a half ago, the world came together in Paris around the first-ever global agreement to set the world on a low-carbon course and protect the world we leave to our children.
It was steady, principled American leadership on the world stage that made that achievement possible. It was bold American ambition that encouraged dozens of other nations to set their sights higher as well. And what made that leadership and ambition possible was America's private innovation and public investment in growing industries like wind and solar — industries that created some of the fastest new streams of good-paying jobs in recent years, and contributed to the longest streak of job creation in our history.
Simply put, the private sector already chose a low-carbon future. And for the nations that committed themselves to that future, the Paris Agreement opened the floodgates for businesses, scientists, and engineers to unleash high-tech, low-carbon investment and innovation on an unprecedented scale.
The nations that remain in the Paris Agreement will be the nations that reap the benefits in jobs and industries created. I believe the United States of America should be at the front of the pack. But even in the absence of American leadership; even as this Administration joins a small handful of nations that reject the future; I'm confident that our states, cities, and businesses will step up and do even more to lead the way, and help protect for future generations the one planet we've got.
And here is Paul Ryan's statement...
... and John Kerry