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  • Participants are seen in silhouette as they look at a screen showing a world map with climate anomalies during the World Climate Change Conference 2015 (COP21) at Le Bourget, near Paris, France, December 8, 2015.

    Participants are seen in silhouette as they look at a screen showing a world map with climate anomalies during the World Climate Change Conference 2015 (COP21) at Le Bourget, near Paris, France, December 8, 2015. | Photo: Reuters

Published 7 November 2017
Opinion

The United States is the world’s biggest economy and second largest greenhouse gas emitter behind China.

U.S. President Donald Trump will not be among the nearly 100 heads of state and government invited to next month's climate summit in Paris, a French presidential aide said Tuesday.

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"For now, President Donald Trump is not invited," he said, while noting that representatives of the US government would attend.

Around 800 organizations and public stakeholders will be on hand for the Dec. 12 event to be held on Ile Seguin, an island in the Seine River southwest of Paris.

The meeting will follow the 23rd UN climate conference (COP23) that opened in Bonn, Germany, on Monday.

The Bonn meeting is dealing with mainly technical issues such as ensuring transparency and compliance, the reporting of emissions, and procedures for allocating climate funds.

The aide to French President Emmanuel Macron said the upcoming summit would aim to "build coalitions" involving cities, investment funds and development banks to further the goals of the accord.

"The idea is to show that there is action, that we must accelerate actions and find new sources of financing for very concrete projects," he said, calling the meeting "very complementary" to the COP23.

Trump announced his decision to withdraw the United States from the historic 2015 Paris Agreement on limiting carbon emissions in June.

The pact calls for capping global warming at "well under" two degrees Celsius (3.6 degrees Fahrenheit) above pre-industrial levels, and 1.5 C if possible.

Syria said on Tuesday that it intends to join the Paris agreement for slowing climate change, further isolating the United States as the only country opposed to the pact.

Syria and Nicaragua were the only two nations outside the 195-nation pact when it was agreed in 2015. Nicaragua’s left-wing government, which originally denounced the plan as too weak, signed up last month.

“I would like to affirm the Syrian Arab Republic’s commitment to the Paris climate change accord,” deputy Environment Minister Wadah Katmawi told a meeting of almost 200 nations at Nov. 6-17 climate talks in Bonn, Germany.

The U.N.’s weather agency said on Monday that this year is on track to be the second or third warmest since records began in the 19th century, behind a record-breaking 2016, and about 1.1 Celsius (2F) above pre-industrial times.

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