Energy giant Exxon Mobil has asked the Donald Trump administration to not scrap US participation in the landmark Paris Agreement, running counter to White House moves on carbon emissions.
The news came as Trump on Tuesday unveiled a new executive order that could roll back some of his predecessor Barack Obama’s policies aimed at curbing greenhouse gas emissions and climate change.
In a March 22 letter to Trump, Exxon’s head of environmental policy and planning Peter Trelenberg praised the Paris Agreement as the first to tackle emissions by both the developed world and developing countries such as China and India.
“It is prudent that the United States remain a party to Paris Agreement to ensure a level playing field so that global energy markets remain as free and competitive as possible,” wrote the executive from Exxon Mobil, the world’s largest publicly-traded energy firm.
Fighting climate change will require technological advances, the letter said, and the United States should advance policies that promote this.
The Trump administration has not said whether it will pull out of the Paris Agreement but its policies could potentially move the US away from meeting internationally-agreed emissions targets.
The Republican president said the US was ending a “war on coal”, claiming that lifting regulations on the industry would lead to new jobs.
The Trump administration is linked to Exxon Mobil through secretary of state Rex Tillerson, who served as the energy giant’s chief executive before becoming America’s top diplomat.