Donald Trump was given a gift during his meeting with Pope Francis at the Vatican: a papal letter detailing why the world should fight against climate change.
The agreement is considered a large part of President Obama’s legacy, particularly his work on environmental issues like establishing a protected national park in Hawaii and passing legislation on clean energy.
The US is one of the largest emitters of carbon in the world and so its role is crucial to the success of the agreement along with China and India, also large carbon emitters.
The encyclical, titled Laudato Si or “Praised Be,” essentially tied protection of the planet made by God to Catholics’ faith in God.
In it he writes that climate change is a “global problem which has grave implications: environmental, social, economic, political, and for the distribution of goods.”
Mr Trump and his aides have often played up the president’s business acumen and experience running a global company. Pope Francis addresses the ties between multinational corporations and climate as well.
“[T]he pollution produced by companies which operate in less developed countries in ways they could never do at home, in those countries in which they raise their capital: We note that often the businesses that operate this way are multinationals. They do here what they would never do in developed countries or the so-called first world.”
He went on to write that “by itself the market cannot guarantee integral human development and social inclusion.”
Mr Trump has repeatedly called climate change a “hoax” perpetrated by the Chinese in the past – a stance which appears to have softened a bit after his face-to-face meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping.
China has become a leader in renewable energy investments, which topped new money pouring into the oil and gas industry for the first time in…