Apple CEO urges White House not to back out of Paris Agreement

U.S. President-elect Donald Trump speaks as (2nd L to R) PayPal co-founder and Facebook board member Peter Thiel, Apple Inc CEO Tim Cook and Oracle CEO Safra Catz look on during a meeting with technology leaders at Trump Tower in New York U.S., December 14, 2016. 

REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton

Last Updated Jun 1, 2017 3:19 PM EDT

Prior to President Trump's expected announcement regarding whether the United States will remain a part of the Paris Agreement on climate change, Apple CEO Tim Cook called the White House encouraging the president not to withdraw.

The call took place on Tuesday, according to a source familiar with the matter, Bloomberg first reported.

The Paris climate deal was signed under former president Barack Obama. Every nation in the world is party to the agreement, with the exception of Nicaragua and Syria, which makes a global commitment to reduction of greenhouse gas emission to slow the effects of climate change. Nicaragua did not sign because the nation hopes for greater punishments than those outlined in the agreement for countries who don't comply.

Mr. Trump is expected to withdraw the United States from the agreement per his campaign promises and sources who are familiar with the matter, but will likely make a formal announcement regarding the position Thursday afternoon.

Apple, which has been forthright in its mission to be a "green" tech company, has a vested interest in the United States remaining signatories to the Paris climate deal. Ninety-six percent of the electricity that powers Apple's facilities globally comes from renewable sources, according to the section of their website dedicated to addressing climate change. If Mr. Trump were to back out of the agreement, the energy goals of the United States would clearly conflict with Cook's own vision for a more environmentally-friendly tech world.

Cook is not the first CEO to advise the White House against withdrawing from the agreement. Tesla's Elon Musk, who serves on a White House economic advisory board and the Manufacturing Jobs Initiative, promises to leave these groups if Mr. Trump ultimately decides to remove the Unites States from the Paris deal. Several other global leaders, including German Chancellor Angela Merkel and the Pope, have also warned Mr. Trump about the dangers of leaving the Paris climate agreement.

"The whole discussion about climate has been difficult, or rather very unsatisfactory," Merkel said at the G7 meeting in Sicily last week. "Here we have the situation that six members, or even seven if you want to add the EU, stand against one."

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