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Trump advisers to meet Tuesday to discuss Paris climate agreement

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Advisers to President Donald Trump will meet on Tuesday to discuss whether to recommend that he withdraw the United States from the Paris climate accord, a White House official said on Monday.

The accord, agreed on by nearly 200 countries in Paris in 2015, aims to limit planetary warming in part by slashing carbon dioxide and other emissions from the burning of fossil fuels. Under the pact, the United States committed to reducing its emissions by 26 to 28 percent from 2005 levels by 2025.

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Trump has said the United States should “cancel” the deal, but he has been mostly quiet on the issue since he was elected last November.

Environmental groups want Washington to remain in the Paris agreement, even if the new administration weakens U.S. pledges.

A White House official said Trump’s aides would “discuss the options, with the goal of providing a recommendation to the president about the path forward.”

The meeting comes before a summit of the Group of Seven wealthy nations in late May, the deadline for the White House to take a position.

White House officials, led by the National Economic Council, have recently been asking publicly traded energy companies for advice on whether to stay in the agreement.

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Peabody Energy has consulted with White House officials, and Cloud Peak Energy Inc confirmed to Reuters it had told White House advisers it was in its interests for the United States to remain in the agreement to ensure there was a global role for high-efficiency coal plants.

On Monday, liquified natural gas exporter Cheniere Energy sent a letter to George David Banks, who handles international energy issues at the NEC, to recommend remaining in the Paris agreement so “the United States can leverage competitive advantages in natural gas and energy technology.”

The advisers expected to attend Tuesday’s meeting include Energy Secretary Rick Perry and Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt.

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Perry, a former Texas governor, at his confirmation hearings in January softened a previous position that the science behind climate change was “phony.”

Last week, Pruitt, a former Oklahoma attorney general, said the United States should exit the agreement because it was a “bad deal” for the country.

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Justin Guay, climate program officer for the Packard Foundation, said countries like China and India would continue to shift toward clean energy even if the United States retreated, adding: “It is most important that the U.S. stays at the table.”

(Reporting by Steve Holland and Valerie Volcovici; Editing by Andrew Hay and Peter Cooney)


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Trump official Mina Chang quits after being busted inflating her resumé

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President Donald Trump has lost another top official in his State Department, days after Marie Yovanovitch testified the department had been "hollowed out."

"Mina Chang, a high-ranking State Department staffer who vaulted into the public spotlight after NBC reported she had inflated her resumé, has resigned from her position," Politico reported Monday.

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Popular right-wing radio host says he was fired in the middle of his show for criticizing Trump

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Liberals and progressives aren’t the only ones right-wing media can be unfair to: they can also be horribly unfair to conservatives. And one of them appears to be radio host Craig Silverman, who says he was fired by Denver’s KNUS 710 AM on Saturday for criticizing President Donald Trump on the air.

As much as right-wing outlets complain about “political correctness” and hypersensitive liberal “snowflakes” who are intolerant of other points of view, those same outlets often expect their employees to be in total lockstep politically — which, in 2019, often means not saying a word against Trump. According to Silverman, he was doing a segment on the late right-wing attorney Roy Cohn (who represented Trump in the 1970s) when KNUS’ program director entered the studio and told him, “You’re done.”

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Trump’s European golf courses lost over $20 million last year

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For the fifth straight year in a row, Donald Trump's Ireland golf course, Trump International Golf Links and Hotel Doonbeg, reported a loss of $1.7 million in 2018. According to a report from The Washington Post, filings made public by the Irish government this Monday "underscored that the Trump Organization has yet to find a profitable formula at its European golf courses," despite large sums of money going into the properties.

Although all of Trump golf courses in Europe saw revenue rise, there was no overall profit. As the Post points out, losses last year for the properties totaled more than $20 million. However, Trump's course in Doonbeg, Ireland, saw a slight improvement, posting an operating profit of over $3,300, contrasted with an operating loss of nearly $400,000 in 2017. Additionally, the 2018 loss was an improvement over the previous year, which saw losses of $2.1 million.

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