Iranian officials have strongly criticized the US for withdrawing from the Paris Agreement on climate change, saying the ‘uncalculated’ and ‘unacceptable’ move shows the Trump administration’s irresponsibility towards the international community.
Speaking at a ceremony in the White House Rose Garden on Thursday, Trump said he was withdrawing the US from the Paris Climate Agreement.
In reaction, Iran’s Foreign Ministry Spokesman Bahram Qassemi stressed on Saturday that the US withdrawal from the Paris accord indicates the irresponsibility of this country’s government vis-à-vis the international community.
“Climate changes have caused big global challenges and combating the horrific consequences of them requires complete and sincere cooperation of all countries, particularly industrialized governments,” he added.
He emphasized that these changes would have “destructive impacts” on developing countries, especially in West Asia, including excessive rise in temperature, vast economic and social damage, drought, dust storm, newly-emerging diseases, displacement and immigration.
The Iranian spokesperson condemned as “unacceptable” the lack of commitment to the Paris agreement by a country that is the second largest producer of greenhouse gases.
He urged the international community to compel the new US administration to completely and precisely implement Washington’s international commitments, Press TV reported.
It is imperative to avoid undermining international agreements such as the Paris accord, which is a symbol of joint cooperation among countries across the world and enhanced multilateralism, he said.
Qassemi added that the Islamic Republic believes that the US cannot shirk its responsibility towards climate changes emanating from greenhouse gas emissions by its “irresponsible” withdrawal from the Paris agreement.
Massoumeh Ebtekar, the head of Iran’s Department of Environment (DoE), also slammed Trump’s move as a completely unscientific and uncalculated one.
However, she added, the Paris agreement is an international accord and will not collapse by the withdrawal of one country.
She described the Paris agreement as a “golden” accord reached amid high tensions, adding that the deal promotes convergence among countries across the world.
All countries have come to the conclusion that the environment is a common issue in the world, she said, adding, “Therefore, the US unilateral act will have no impact [on the agreement] and will bear no fruit.”
Ebtekar further highlighted the significance of the Paris agreement for the oil producing and exporting countries and said many oil-rich states have so far joined the pact.
“The Iranian administration has also carried out all legal measures to join the Paris accord and we are now waiting for the Guardian Council to make a decision in this regard,” the vice president added.
“In the Paris agreement, Iran has committed to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions by four percent without any precondition and by eight percent provided that sanctions [against the country] were lifted,” Ebtekar said.
The Paris climate accord is an agreement within the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) dealing with greenhouse gas emissions mitigation, adaptation and finance starting in the year 2020.
It was negotiated by representatives of 195 countries at the 21st Conference of the Parties of the UNFCCC in Paris and adopted by consensus on December 12, 2015. Since June 2017, 195 UNFCCC members have signed the agreement, 148 of which have ratified it.
In the Paris agreement, each country determines its own contribution it should make in order to mitigate global warming. There is no mechanism to force a country to set a specific target by a specific date.