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For Immediate Release

Contact: Ashley Siefert at UCS,, +1 952-239-0199

Trump's Refusal to Act on Climate Change Leaves US Isolated at G20 Leaders Summit

Statement by Alden Meyer with the Union of Concerned Scientists


Leaders of the G20 countries and European Union representatives met this week in Hamburg, Germany to discuss paramount global issues. This morning, they released their official "communique," a document outlining the group's top priorities. While terrorism and trade were hot topics at the summit, the issue of climate change was also contentious, with President Trump falling out of step with the other 19 countries in the wake of his announcement to withdraw the U.S. from the Paris Agreement--adopted by nearly 200 countries in 2015 and aimed at limiting global climate change.

Below is a statement from Alden Meyer, director of strategy and policy at the Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS) and a leading expert on the United Nation's international climate negotiations process.

"The G20 summit provides another powerful demonstration that the rest of the world is moving ahead with climate action, leaving President Trump isolated following his ill-advised decision to withdraw from the Paris Agreement. Other leaders understand that climate change threatens the prosperity and wellbeing of their citizens, and are eager to capitalize on the tremendous economic opportunities offered by energy efficiency and renewable energy solutions.

"The Hamburg Climate and Energy Action Plan--endorsed by all the other countries attending the summit--provides a roadmap for implementing and strengthening the commitments that countries made in Paris, as is needed to avoid the worst impacts of climate change. Adoption of the plan, along with the declaration by all other leaders that the Paris Agreement is 'irreversible,' shows that President Trump's 'fossil fuels forever' agenda is failing to get any traction, no matter how hard he tries to cling to it. President Trump may have forced inclusion of language in the communique on access to and use of fossil fuels by threatening to block the whole text if he didn't get his way, but that will do nothing to slow the accelerating shift away from polluting fossil fuels towards a global economy powered by clean, renewable energy."

The Union of Concerned Scientists is the leading science-based nonprofit working for a healthy environment and a safer world. UCS combines independent scientific research and citizen action to develop innovative, practical solutions and to secure responsible changes in government policy, corporate practices, and consumer choices.