EPA chief: Climate pact should focus on exporting US technology

EPA chief: Climate pact should focus on exporting US technology
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The head of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) said Friday that the Trump administration will remain “engaged” in international climate talks following President Trump's decision to withdraw from the Paris climate change agreement.

EPA Administrator Scott PruittEdward (Scott) Scott PruittOvernight Energy: EPA to make formal decision on regulating drinking water contaminant | Utility to close coal plant despite Trump plea | Greens say climate is high on 2020 voters’ minds EPA to announce PFAS chemical regulation plans by end of year Court tosses challenge to EPA's exclusion of certain scientists from advisory boards MORE told reporters at the White House that any future climate deal should focus on exporting United States technology to the rest of the world.

Pruitt’s comments came after numerous world leaders representing the European Union, Italy, Germany, France and other nations refused to renegotiate the Paris pact or sit down for a new agreement should Trump push to pursue one.

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“We are going to stay engaged and try to work through agreements and achieve outcomes that put America’s interests first,” Pruitt said during a testy briefing in which reporters repeatedly pushed him to explain Trump’s opinion on climate change, which he largely sidestepped.

Pruitt sought to promote recent decreases in the United States’ carbon dioxide emissions and said that any future deal should focus on exporting technology like hydraulic fracturing and “clean coal” to other countries. He did not mention renewable energy technology.

“We need to export clean coal technology. We need to export the technology and natural gas to those around the globe, India and China, and help them learn from us on what we’ve done to achieve good outcomes. We’ve led with actions, not words,” Pruitt said.

After Trump’s Thursday announcement on the 2015 Paris accord, senior White House officials offered few details on Trump’s statement that he would be open to renegotiating the deal. They said Trump has not taken any action to convene new talks.

Pruitt similarly had few details. Asked to explain who Trump would negotiate with, Pruitt responded, “Well, that’s up to them, right?”

“If nations around the globe want to seek to learn from us on what we’re doing to reduce our CO2 footprint, we’re going to share that with them,” he continued. “And that’s something that should occur, and will occur, in the future, and we will reach out and reciprocate with nations that seek to achieve that.”