U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley beat back persistent questioning Sunday about whether President Trump believes in climate change and vowed that America will continue to be a clean energy leader after exiting the Paris climate change agreement.
Ms. Haley vouched that the president not only believes in climate change but that human activity contributes to it.
“He believes the climate is changing and he believes pollutants are part of that equation. And I know how that he is absolutely intent on making sure that we have clean air, clean water, that he makes sure that we’re doing everything we can to keep America’s moral compass in the world when it comes to the environment,” Ms. Haley said on CBS’ “Face the Nation.”
“We’ve done that in the past. We’ll do it in the future. It’s what the U.S. does. It’s what we’ll continue to do,” she told host John Dickerson.
Ms. Haley last week also defended the president’s views on climate change. The White House has stressed that quitting the Paris accord was about getting out of a bad deal that penalized the U.S. but excused other countries that are big polluters.
Mr. Dickerson pressed the ambassador about Mr. Trump’s assertion during the campaign that climate change is a “hoax.”
“The president believes the climate is changing. And he does know that pollutants are a part of that equation,” she said.
Mr. Dickerson was not convinced.
“So he believes that human activity, which creates those pollutants, leads to climate change, is that right?” he said.
“John, I just gave you the answer,” said Ms. Halley. “I mean, that’s what he believes and so that’s as clear as I know to give it.”
She added: “We can all weigh this out, but at the end of the day, watch what the president does. What he is doing is making sure that we have jobs for American citizens but also making sure that we have a clean environment.”
“The thing is: should we do what in — with the environment — what America thinks is best or what the international community thinks is best? Either way, America is doing a lot better than most countries. They should continue if they like the Paris agreement. But we shouldn’t be dependent on what the international community thinks we should and shouldn’t do,” said Ms. Haley.