Trump to pull U.S. out of Paris climate accord

White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer told reporters Tuesday that the president met with Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt to discuss the accord.

Agreed on by up to 200 countries, the deal aims to reduce carbon dioxide and other emissions from the burning of fossil fuels.

The New York Times reported this week that advisers were in a "tug of war" trying to influence Trump on the decision about the Paris agreement. Fox News also cited an unidentified source. He tweeted over the weekend that he would make a decision "next week". The US had previously committed to a goal of reducing carbon emissions by 26% to 28% by 2025.

A full withdrawal from the Paris Accord could take as long as three years, Axios reported, unless the US exited the United Nations treaty itself, which would likely be seen as a drastic move by the worldwide community.

According to news outlet Axios, which quotes two sources with direct knowledge of the decision, President Trump has chose to withdraw from the Paris climate accord.

An American pullout from the 196-nation Paris Agreement would deal a major blow to the so-called "climate diplomacy" which, less than 18 months ago, celebrated the historic pact made possible by a hard-fought agreement between Beijing and Washington, under president Barack Obama's leadership.

Trump had waffled on his decision whether to keep the U.S. committed to the landmark 2015 agreement or fulfill his campaign promise to pull out.

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"It is imperative that we maintain our seat at the table in global discussions of how to address the threats posed by climate change", a group of bipartisan lawmakers wrote to the White House in April. The issue of climate change has divided key officials in the administration.

World leaders, who had hoped to put out a statement of consensus on the Paris Agreement, expressed their frustration, with German Chancellor Angela Merkel declaring: "We have a situation where six, or if you also include the European Union seven, are against one".

Supporters of the climate pact are concerned that a U.S. exit could lead other nations to weaken their commitments or also withdraw, softening an accord that scientists have said is critical to avoiding the worst impacts of climate change.

Some northern European countries are criticizing the US for its expected withdrawal from the Paris climate accords.

Environmentalists also fear the ripple effect Trump's decision might have on other major polluters, such as China and India, who have reiterated their commitment to the accord but could be emboldened to walk away in the face of similar action by the US.

Sky's US Correspondent Amanda Walker said: "His daughter Ivanka Trump has been trying to encourage him to stay in the deal".