Trump Administration to Brief Officials on Emissions Goals

The top economic adviser of the U.S. President Donald Trump is set to draft the administration’s proposals in order to reduce the greenhouse-gas emissions while assuring that its position on the Paris climate deal has not changed, White House officials said, after news emerged that U.S. was seeking ways to remain part of the 2015 accord, The Wall Street Journal informs.

The economic chief of the White House Gary Cohn has set a breakfast debate on energy and climate matters in New York, which follows after a similar meeting led by Canada, China and the European Union in Montreal on Saturday, when the U.S. officials brought up revising Washington’s goals under the Paris climate deal to avoid pulling out of it, according to officials at the event.

Cohn, who is heading the White House’s position toward the 197-party agreement, is set to discuss how the U.S. can proceed to reduce greenhouse-gas emissions without sacrificing its re-emergence as a leading energy producer, according to a White House official. The initiative for holding an informal meeting in New York materialized shortly before the Montreal event, according to an invitation letter from Cohn, and it was interpreted by some U.S. partners as a harbinger of a policy shift.

Trump administration officials on Sunday confirmed that the president is open to revising U.S. commitments under the Paris climate agreement rather than withdrawing from it.

The White House has said such a stance is not a shift: Trump said in June that the U.S. would withdraw from the deal “but begin negotiations to re-enter either the Paris accord or an…entirely new transaction, on terms that are fair to the United States.”

But Trump has repeatedly boasted of withdrawing from what he has called a “job-killing” accord and has not mentioned revising of the country’s participation in it.

Asked Sunday by ABC News whether the U.S. could remain in the Paris accord, national security adviser H.R. McMaster said that “if there’s an agreement that benefits the American people, certainly.”

“The president is open to finding those conditions where we can remain engaged,” Secretary of State Rex Tillerson told CBS News.

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