MOSCOW, June 2. /TASS/. Washington’s decision to pull out of the Paris Climate Agreement and the response of the EU countries prove that the parties are facing the worst ever crisis in relations, Chairman of the Russian State Duma (lower house of parliament) Committee for Education and Science Vyacheslav Nikonov told reporters on Friday.
According to him, the decision to withdraw from the Paris Agreement, announced by US President Donald Trump, "will negatively affect" Washington’s relations with Brussels. "The crisis in the US-EU relations has already become obvious," said Nikonov, who is an international affairs expert. "In any case, the European politicians have never used such tough rhetoric against any of the US presidents. The withdrawal (from the Paris Agreement - TASS) is not the only reason for that as a number of other issues have accumulated," Nikonov said in response to a question by a TASS correspondent.
At the same time, the senior Russian lawmaker pointed out that Trump "never spoke against his European counterparts but he has heard so many things from them that he must be unwilling to hold talks with them." "I would not exaggerate the crisis in their relations but it is the worst one in the history of the European Union and NATO, if we don’t count the Vietnam and Iraq wars," he stressed.
Nikonov went on to say that during the election campaign, Trump had stated that "he was not content with the environmental protection legislation which he believed to be too tough, not allowing companies to develop their potential." "This is why it (the decision to withdraw from the Paris Agreement - TASS) was predictable to some extent," the expert added.
The Paris Agreement was adopted on December 12, 2015, at the COP-21 UN Climate Change Conference held in the capital of France. The 195 forum participants agreed to avert a rise in the average global air temperature by more than 2 degrees Celsius by the year 2100 compared to the preindustrial era. Scientists believe higher temperatures may bring about irreversible consequences for the environment.
On April 22, 2016, as many as 175 countries, including Russia, Germany, India, China and the United States, signed the agreement at a summit held at the United Nations headquarters.
According to the agreement, by 2025, the US was to reduce gas emissions by 26-28% in comparison with the levels seen ten years ago. On Thursday, US President Donald Trump announced that the country would pull out of the agreement.