Macron calls Biden victory a chance to ‘make our planet great again’

Welcoming the prospects of US President-elect Joe Biden rejoining the Paris climate accord, French President Emmanuel Macron called it a chance to “make our planet great again”.

Mr Macron’s comments followed those of other world leaders including the British prime minister Boris Johnson, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, who welcomed Mr Biden’s successful bid in the US election as a boost to global cooperation in tackling climate change.

In contrast to four years of climate change policy inaction under Mr Trump, who withdrew the US from the 2015 accord, Mr Biden has pledged a $2 trillion plan to boost US investment in clean energy and combat global warming, while also rejoining the historic Paris agreement on the first day of his presidency.

The French leader said having Mr Biden in the White House will reinforce the validity of the accord that aims to prevent catastrophic climate change and has been signed by nearly 200 countries.

“It is proof that we had to stand firm against all the headwinds,” Mr Macron said on Thursday during an online summit, according to Reuters. “ ‘Make our planet great again’ is a possibility, not just in words but also in deed.”

Mr Trump had long criticised the Obama-era climate pact and in 2017 withdrew the United States, the world’s second largest emitter of greenhouse gases behind China, from the agreement, saying it was too costly.

As a result, the US officially exited the agreement on 4 November – the day after an election in which Mr Trump was voted out. The Trump campaign is still refusing to concede and plans legal action in several swing states.

Playing on Mr Trump’s 2016 campaign slogan, “Make America Great Again,” the French leader launched his climate initiative “Make Our Planet Great Again” in June 2017, which provided US climate scientists multi-year grants to relocate and conduct climate research in France.



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