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Moe urges climate change talks with U.S. after Trump pulls out of Paris accord
Saskatchewan Environment Minister Scott Moe leaves a meeting of Canadian environment ministers in Montreal, Monday, Oct.3, 2016. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ryan Remiorz
The Canadian Press
Published Thursday, June 1, 2017 3:57PM CST
Saskatchewan Environment Minister Scott Moe says Canada needs to reach out to the United States to talk about a North American approach on climate change.
Moe says the economies of both countries are so connected that it's important to move in lockstep on policies that can help reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
The comments came after President Donald Trump announced that the U.S. will withdraw from the Paris climate agreement, which is aimed at reducing carbon emissions to slow climate change.
Trump says the deal disadvantages the U.S. and is causing lost jobs and lower wages.
However, the president also said the U.S. will begin negotiations to re-enter either the Paris accord or an entirely new transaction.
Moe says Saskatchewan is concerned that some industries, such as oil and gas or agriculture, could be hurt if Canada's closest trading partner is going to be operating under a different set of guidelines to reduce emissions.
"I think all of the discussions that we have, whether it be on things like softwood lumber, whether it be on any trade agreement that we have, or whether it be on things like the Paris accord or regulations and polices that we have to reduce emissions, we should be moving lockstep with someone that we're as integrated in as the United States of America," Moe said Thursday.
"And if we aren't in step, we should definitely be reaching out and having those discussions on them, so that we're not at a competitive disadvantage in many of the industries, quite frankly, that we have here in the province of Saskatchewan."
Federal Environment Minister Catherine McKenna says Canada is deeply disappointed with the U.S. decision to pull out of the Paris climate-change agreement.
But McKenna says the agreement remains a good deal for Canada and for the rest of the world.
McKenna plans to meet with her U.S. counterpart in Italy next week, where she says she will seek clarity on the U.S. position.
The U.S. had agreed under former President Barack Obama to reduce emissions to 26 per cent to 28 per cent of 2005 levels by 2025 -- about 1.6 billion tonnes.