OTTAWA May 31 Canada on Wednesday greeted
reports that U.S. President Donald Trump was leaning toward
withdrawal from a pact on climate change by saying it would
"keep marching on" with the rest of the world to combat global
If Trump does pull the United States out of the 195-nation
Paris accord, it would be a blow to Prime Minister Justin
Trudeau. A source familiar with the matter said Trudeau strongly
urged the president to stay in the pact during a meeting of the
Group of Seven leading industrialized nations last week.
Trudeau's Liberal government, which insists meaningful
action be taken to curb emissions of greenhouse gases, plans to
impose a national price on carbon.
Environment Minister Catherine McKenna said the Paris deal
was a strong signal to markets and also to Canadian firms
specializing in clean technology.
"I think this really is a huge opportunity for Canada and no
one government can stop the momentum," she told reporters at an
event in Toronto.
Asked what the impact of a Trump withdrawal would be, she
replied: "Canada is going to keep marching on, as is the rest of
During the G7 summit, Trudeau told Trump the world economy
was already adjusting to climate change and the real issue was
who should lead that process, said the source, who asked for
anonymity given the sensitivity of the situation.
"Countries that are outside the Paris framework risk being
left behind as the energy, food and transportation systems are
transformed by new technologies," said the source.
"The prime minister's main point was dealing with climate
change is going to create growth and jobs, especially in energy.
We want those jobs and that growth to be in our countries,"
added the source, who spoke before news of Trump's possible
Separately, Natural Resources Minister Jim Carr told
reporters that Ottawa would stick to plans for a national carbon
price to fight global warming.
Critics say the idea means Canadians firms' operating costs
will rise at a time when Trump is pushing to cut corporate taxes
and relax environmental regulations.
McKenna said she had urged U.S. officials to stay in the
Paris deal, noting that 90 percent of the agreement remained to
"We certainly will be at the table playing a leadership role
because we think it's the right thing to do and makes economic
sense," she said.
(Reporting by David Ljunggren; Editing by David Gregorio)