Sec. of State Rex Tillerson sows confusion over Trump’s climate policy


What is President Donald Trump’s policy on climate change and does he think the United States should be encouraged — or even obliged — to follow the dictates of the Paris climate accord? Well, truly it depends who you talk to and no issue better illustrates the cleavage in the Trump administration between liberal progressives and conservatives who are ardently opposed to big government solutions.

If Secretary of State Rex Tillerson respresents the administration the abroad, and by the very definition of his office, that is precisely what he does, then American environmental policy is being pulled in the direction of the climate change acolytes who not only seriously believe that it is mankind’s most urgent mission to make war on climate change. For the most devout, this is not merely a political objective, it is a religious mission.

So what was Tillerson up to this week? Well, he journeyed to Alaska to have a summit with something called the Arctic partners. While there he signed the Fairbanks Declaration: a document that explicitly endorses the objectives of the Paris Accord. Tillerson was not just complicit in the declaration, nor was his participation reluctant or somehow coerced; no, Tillerson led the discussion and enthusiastically  forged unity among those present.

It always concerns me when a U.S. secretary of state earns the unbridled praise of a member of Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s cabinet. But Foreign Affairs Minsiter Chystia Freeland was absolutely effusive in her praise of Tillerson’s tremendous efforts on behalf of the climate change cause, clearly believing that he was not only exhibiting his own environmental fervor but that of his government.

Trump needs to clarify his environmental position with the same speed and zest that he applies to his Twitter activities. The climate change movement does not just represent an utterly unrealistic political objective but it remains potentially the largest tax grab in history as we are expected to somehow reduce carbon emissions by paying more for gas. The objective of course is to reduce the population to a stone-age lifestyle that is bereft of any carbon-producing modern convenience or warmth-emitting fuel.

Of course, even if this transformation is achieved, it will not offset the increasing industrialization of China and India but we in the West will certainly feel the pain of doing our part. It is not so much a climate change war as …


FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — Arctic nations have renewed calls for the world to address climate warming, but U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson says the United States will not rush to make a decision on its policies.

Tillerson spoke Thursday in Fairbanks, Alaska, at a meeting of the Arctic Council, an advisory group made up of the eight Arctic nations and indigenous groups.

The council adopted a nine-page “Fairbanks Declaration 2017,” which noted that the Arctic is warming at more than twice the rate of the global average. The document noted the importance of reducing soot and methane emissions and said climate change is the most serious threat to Arctic biodiversity.

Tillerson signed the document. But in opening remarks, he cautioned that the United States is reviewing several important policies, including how the Trump administration will approach the issue of climate change.

“We are appreciative that each of you has an important point of view, and you should know that we are taking the time to understand your concerns,” Tillerson told other representatives on the council. “We’re not going to rush to make a decision. We’re going to work to make the right decision for the United States.”

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AP Photo/Mark Thiessen


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    FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — Arctic nations have renewed calls for the world to address climate warming, but U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson says the United …

    A Trump climate betrayal?! US signs international declaration on climate change despite Trump’s past statements–abc-news-topstories.html


    US signs international declaration on climate change despite Trump’s past statements

    President Trump has talked tough in the past about his skeptical views on climate change, his administration appears to be taking a more cautious approach to the issue on the world stage in the early days of his presidency.

    Rex Tillerson signed a document today calling climate change a “serious threat” to the Arctic and noting the need for action to reduce its potentially harmful effects.

    The document, known as the Fairbanks Declaration, concluded Tillerson’s chairing of a meeting of the Arctic Council, a board made up of indigenous groups and the eight countries bordering the Arctic, in Fairbanks, Alaska.

    While the council only has the power to issue advisories, the language in the statement signed by Tillerson comes in stark contrast to statements and promises made by President Trump about climate change.

    Trump has repeatedly called into question the science behind climate change, even calling it a “very expensive hoax.” During his 2016 campaign, Trump promised to pull out of the Paris accord and his administration has ordered cuts to funding for climate science and has slashed environmental regulations.

    While Tillerson endorsed the Arctic Council document, he cautioned that the U.S. would not be rushed into formulating its policy.

    “We’re not going to rush to make a decision. We’re going to work to make the right decision for the United States,” he said.

    The Trump administration has not come out with a decision on whether the U.S. will pull out of the Paris Climate accord signed under President Obama. That non-binding international agreement went into effect last year and calls for countries to set goals for reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

    The Fairbanks proclamation says that “the Arctic is warming at more than twice the rate of the global average, resulting in

    Sad: Exxon urges Trump to keep US in UN Paris climate accord


    ExxonMobil Letter comes as White House seeks to unravel Obama greenhouse commitments

    © Bloomberg

    ExxonMobil, the largest American oil group, has written to the Trump administration urging it to keep the US in the Paris climate accordagreed at the end of 2015.

    In a letter to President Donald Trump’s special assistant for international energy and the environment, Exxon argues that the Paris accord is “an effective framework for addressing the risks of climate change”.

    The letter was sent last week, but has emerged as Mr Trump is preparing to announce executive orders beginning a rollback several of Barack Obama’s climate policies, while leaving the question of Paris open.

    Trump administration officials have said a decision on participation in Paris is still “under discussion”, and have been soliciting views from US energy companies.

    Exxon argues in its letter that there are several reasons for the US to stay in the Paris accord, including the opportunity to support greater use of natural gas, which creates lower carbon dioxide emissions than coal when burnt for power generation.

    Several other large international oil companies, particularly in Europe, have also backed action to address climate change that could benefit them by boosting demand for gas.

    Peter Trelenberg, Exxon’s manager for environmental policy and planning, writes in the letter: “It is prudent that the United States remain a party to the Paris agreement to ensure a level playing field, so that global energy markets remain as free and competitive as possible.”

    He also argues the US is well-placed to be internationally competitive within the framework of Paris, thanks to its abundant natural gas reserves and its “innovative private industries, including the oil, gas and petrochemical sectors”.…

    NYT features Climate Depot: Top Trump Advisers Are Split on Paris Agreement on Climate Change

    NYT Excerpt: By CORAL DAVENPORT MARCH 2, 2017

    WASHINGTON — The White House is fiercely divided over President Trump’s campaign promise to “cancel” the Paris agreement, the 2015 accord that binds nearly every country to curb global warming, with more moderate voices maintaining that he should stick with the agreement despite his campaign pledge.

    Stephen K. Bannon, Mr. Trump’s senior adviser, is pressing the president to officially pull the United States from the landmark accord, but he is clashing with Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and the president’s daughter Ivanka Trump, who fear the move could have broad and damaging diplomatic ramifications.

    Mr. Trump vowed on the campaign trail to tear up President Barack Obama’s global warming policies, and on the home front he is moving aggressively to meet those pledges with deep cuts to the Environmental Protection Agency and a new E.P.A. administrator, Scott Pruitt, who is a skeptic of climate science.

    Next week, Mr. Trump plans to sign an executive order directing Mr. Pruitt to start the lengthy legal process of unwinding Mr. Obama’s E.P.A. regulations for cutting greenhouse pollution from coal-fired power plants. Those regulations are the linchpin of the last administration’s program to meet the nation’s obligations to reduce climate emissions under the Paris agreement.

    While the president cannot, as Mr. Trump suggested, unilaterally undo a 194-nation accord that has already been legally ratified, he could initiate the four-year process to withdraw the world’s largest economy and second-largest climate polluter from the first worldwide deal to tackle global warming. Such a move would rend a global deal that has been hailed as historic, throwing into question the fate of global climate policy and, diplomats say, the credibility of the United States.

    But it would also demonstrate to his supporters that Mr. Trump is a man of his word, putting American coal interests ahead of a global deal forged by Mr. Obama.

    “The two greatest obstacles to a Clexit (climate exit from U.N. Paris agreement) are probably Ivanka and Tillerson,” wrote Marc Morano, a former Republican Senate staff member who now runs Climate Depot, a fossil-fuel-industry-funded website that promotes the denial of climate science, in an email. “Tillerson with his ‘seat at the table’ views could be biggest proponent of not withdrawing the U.S. from the agreement.”

    Mr. Tillerson is a former chief executive of Exxon Mobil, which, like many major global

    Sec of State Tillerson won’t meet with U.N. climate chief — & ‘it’s driving environmentalists crazy’

    With barely a month as Secretary of State, Rex Tillerson is coming under fire for not having met with the UN climate chief Patricia Espinosa. Espinosa sent a request to Tillerson for a face-to-face meeting but the newly minted secretary has been traversing the globe and meeting with other diplomats. That’s not sitting well with worried environmentalists and the impecunious #United Nations.

    Espinosa made her comments after a meeting this week in Chicago where she discussed making businesses less carbon intensive. She told reporters she’s not surprised given it was the beginnings of a new administration. She also recognized the importance of having the U.S. as a partner. Before leaving office, President Obama sent the U.N. climate green fund $1 billion.

    Where in the world is Secretary of State Rex Tillerson? 

    Photo published for Perspective | Where in the world is Secretary of State Rex Tillerson?

    Perspective | Where in the world is Secretary of State Rex Tillerson?

    A lot of foreign policy is invisible. Unfortunately, I’m not sure that explains the rarely seen secretary of state.

    ‘Seat at the table’

    Tillerson has been a proponent of a carbon tax and said at his confirmation hearings the United States should have a “seat at the table” when asked about the Paris Climate Accord. Espinosa admitted the U.S. was an important ally and she looked forward to meeting with the administration once everything has settled down.

    She also fretted the U.S. could voluntarily withdraw from the Paris agreement, which calls for keeping warming from rising over 1.5°C by reducing CO2 emissions. Espinosa said she was worried the U.S. would change its position on the accord, which is why she was looking forward to working with Tillerson. Given previous comments by Trump, she has good reason.

    Aggressive goals

    And if President Trump did ignore the non-binding agreement there’s really not much the U.N. can do; Espinosa believes there are enough companies on the road to reducing carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions so it won’t matter. She noted a number of cities, largely in California, have set aggressive agendas for meeting “sustainability” goals.…

    Anti-Exxon Crusade On The Ropes After Failing To Stop Rex Tillerson’s Confirmation

    Lefties in tizzy over Tillerson: Morano responds: ‘If greens weren’t upset, then I’d be deeply concerned’

    Environmentalists are fuming after Rex Tillerson has been confirmed as Secretary of State, but a skeptic of climate change says that’s a good thing.

    Climate change skeptic Marc Morano, who oversees website Climate Depot, finds it “fascinating” to see all the angst.

    “The only reservation I would have with Rex Tillerson,” says Morano, “is that he, as CEO of Exxon-Mobil, wanted a seat at the table and sort of played along with the United Nations – their science reports and their claims – and even supported a carbon tax, and sort of took the lesser of all the evils out there.”

    Despite those reservations, the fact that environmental groups are so upset makes Morano feel better about President Trump’s choice for Secretary of State.

    “If they weren’t upset at the pick for Secretary of State then I’d be deeply concerned,” he says. “But the fact that their heads are exploding, that’s a good thing because it shows that Rex Tillerson is the right man for the job.”…