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Trump removes climate change from national security policy

President Trump is said to have removed climate change as a priority from his National Security Stra..



  • President Trump is said to have removed climate change as a priority from his National Security Strategy
  • In previous years, the issue was placed prominently among other threats to the country
  • In Trump's version due to be released on Monday, it is less emphasized
  • He focuses his climate policies instead towards global economic growth and energy security
  • It falls in line with the president's stance on global climate policy and follows his decision earlier this year to withdraw the US from The Paris Agreement
  • The US is now the only country in the world which is not participating in the agreement
  • As Trump finalized his Strategy this week, 50 world leaders met in Brussels to discuss climate change

By Jennifer Smith For

Published: 08:05 EST, 16 December 2017 | Updated: 08:29 EST, 16 December 2017

President Trump has removed climate change from his National Security Strategy which is due to be released on Monday, it has been claimed.

The Federalist, which claims to have had access to a draft version of the document, says it will prioritize other threats instead.

Any mention of climate policies is angled not towards global warming but instead is tied to economic growth and energy security.

It is in line with Trump's decision earlier this year to remove the United States from The Paris Agreement and follows his dubious stance on global warming.

The draft Strategy reads: 'Climate policies will continue to shape the global energy system.

President Trump has removed climate change from a list of national security threats, it has been reported 

President Trump has removed climate change from a list of national security threats, it has been reported

'U.S. leadership is indispensable to countering an anti-growth, energy agenda that is detrimental to U.S. economic and energy security interests.

'Given future global energy demand, much of the developing world will require fossil fuels, as well as other forms of energy, to power their economies and lift their people out of poverty.'

The Federalist reports that it is given considerably less prominence than in previous versions.

President Obama repeatedly referred to global warming and climate change as one of the most looming threats that the country faces.

Earlier this week, 50 world leaders gathered in Brussels for a climate change summit.

Trump was not among them and was not invited to the event but his name was brought up.

French President Emmanuel Macron described his decision not to participate in the agreement as 'very bad news'.

He was morose as he spoke, telling the gathered audience: 'We’re losing the battle.

'We’re not moving quickly enough. We all need to act.'

On Friday in Chicago, President Barack Obama spoke at a separate summit where he recalled making the climate a priority during his presidency.

'2015 was the warmest year on record until 2016 became the warmest on record.

'That what that tells us the climate is changing faster than our efforts to address it.

'And that's why I made climate change a priority while I was president,' he said.

As Trump's team finalized its stance on the issue in the National Security Strategy, other world leaders met in Belgium to discuss it. French President Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Angela Merkel are pictured As Trump's team finalized its stance on the issue in the National Security Strategy, other world leaders met in Belgium to discuss it. French President Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Angela Merkel are pictured 

As Trump's team finalized its stance on the issue in the National Security Strategy, other world leaders met in Belgium to discuss it. French President Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Angela Merkel are pictured

Trump has long been dubious about his predecessors' commitment to the issue. In this famous and widely mocked 2012 tweet, he suggested global warming was a construct of 'the Chinese' Trump has long been dubious about his predecessors' commitment to the issue. In this famous and widely mocked 2012 tweet, he suggested global warming was a construct of 'the Chinese' 

Trump has long been dubious about his predecessors' commitment to the issue. In this famous and widely mocked 2012 tweet, he suggested global warming was a construct of 'the Chinese'

Trump's anti-climate change action stance was a common thread throughout his campaign. His dubious stance on the issue predates his political career.

In one famous and now widely mocked tweet in 2012, he said global warming was a construct of 'the Chinese'.

In June, he followed through on promises to remove the US from The Paris Agreement, a multi-nation agreement which every country in the world has now signed apart from America.

Trump's reason for backing out was that the agreement was not favorable enough to the US.

He has expressed a willingness to 'renegotiate' and 're-enter' under more pleasing terms when he announced the decision.

'As President, I can put no other consideration before the wellbeing of American citizens.

'The Paris Climate Accord is simply the latest example of Washington entering into an agreement that disadvantages the United States to the exclusive benefit of other countries, leaving American workers — who I love — and taxpayers to absorb the cost in terms of lost jobs, lower wages, shuttered factories, and vastly diminished economic production,' he said.

His biggest concern was the loss of jobs which energy restrictions may impose.

'Compliance with the terms of the Paris Accord and the onerous energy restrictions it has placed on the United States could cost America as much as 2.7 million lost jobs by 2025 according to the National Economic Research Associates.

'This includes '440,000 fewer manufacturing jobs — not what we need — believe me, this is not what we need — including automobile jobs, and the further decimation of vital American industries on which countless communities rely.

'They rely for so much, and we would be giving them so little,' he said.

The agreement seeks to prevent global temperatures from rising by 2 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels.

The US, Syria and Nicaragua were the only three countries in the world not to have joined it by November. Nicaragua and Syria have since signed.

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Sydney seaplane crash: Exhaust fumes affected pilot, report confirms




The pilot of a seaplane that crashed into an Australian river, killing all on board, had been left confused and disorientated by leaking exhaust fumes, investigators have confirmed.

The Canadian pilot and five members of a British family died in the crash north of Sydney in December 2017.

All were found to have higher than normal levels of carbon monoxide in their blood, a final report has found.

It recommended the mandatory fitting of gas detectors in all such planes.

British businessman Richard Cousins, 58, died alongside his 48-year-old fiancée, magazine editor Emma Bowden, her 11-year-old daughter Heather and his sons, Edward, 23, and William, 25, and pilot Gareth Morgan, 44. Mr Cousins was the chief executive of catering giant Compass.

The family had been on a sightseeing flight in the de Havilland DHC-2 Beaver plane when it nose-dived into the Hawkesbury River at Jerusalem Bay, about 50km (30 miles) from the city centre.

The final report by the Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB) confirmed the findings of an interim report published in 2020.

It said pre-existing cracks in the exhaust collector ring were believed to have released exhaust gas into the engine bay. Holes left by missing bolts in a firewall then allowed the fumes to enter the cabin.

“As a result, the pilot would have almost certainly experienced effects such as confusion, visual disturbance and disorientation,” the report said.

“Consequently, it was likely that this significantly degraded the pilot’s ability to safely operate the aircraft.”

The ATSB recommended the Civil Aviation Safety Authority consider mandating the fitting of carbon monoxide detectors in piston-engine aircraft that carry passengers.

It previously issued safety advisory notices to owners and operators of such aircraft that they install detectors “with an active warning” to pilots”. Operators and maintainers of planes were also advised to carry out detailed inspections of exhaust systems and firewalls.

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Australia unlikely to fully reopen border in 2021, says top official




Australia is unlikely to fully open its borders in 2021 even if most of its population gets vaccinated this year as planned, says a senior health official.

The comments dampen hopes raised by airlines that travel to and from the country could resume as early as July.

Department of Health Secretary Brendan Murphy made the prediction after being asked about the coronavirus’ escalation in other nations.

Dr Murphy spearheaded Australia’s early action to close its borders last March.

“I think that we’ll go most of this year with still substantial border restrictions,” he told the Australian Broadcasting Corporation on Monday.

“Even if we have a lot of the population vaccinated, we don’t know whether that will prevent transmission of the virus,” he said, adding that he believed quarantine requirements for travellers would continue “for some time”.

Citizens, permanent residents and those with exemptions are allowed to enter Australia if they complete a 14-day hotel quarantine at their own expense.

Qantas – Australia’s national carrier – reopened bookings earlier this month, after saying it expected international travel to “begin to restart from July 2021.”

However, it added this depended on the Australian government’s deciding to reopen borders.

Australia’s tight restrictions

The country opened a travel bubble with neighbouring New Zealand late last year, but currently it only operates one-way with inbound flights to Australia.

Australia has also discussed the option of travel bubbles with other low-risk places such as Taiwan, Japan and Singapore.

A vaccination scheme is due to begin in Australia in late February. Local authorities have resisted calls to speed up the process, giving more time for regulatory approvals.

Australia has so far reported 909 deaths and about 22,000 cases, far fewer than many nations. It reported zero locally transmitted infections on Monday.

Experts have attributed much of Australia’s success to its swift border lockdown – which affected travellers from China as early as February – and a hotel quarantine system for people entering the country.

Local outbreaks have been caused by hotel quarantine breaches, including a second wave in Melbourne. The city’s residents endured a stringent four-month lockdown last year to successfully suppress the virus.

Other outbreaks – including one in Sydney which has infected about 200 people – prompted internal border closures between states, and other restrictions around Christmas time.

The state of Victoria said on Monday it would again allow entry to Sydney residents outside of designated “hotspots”, following a decline in cases.

While the measures have been praised, many have also criticised them for separating families across state borders and damaging businesses.

Dr Murphy said overall Australia’s virus response had been “pretty good” but he believed the nation could have introduced face masks earlier and improved its protections in aged care homes.

In recent days, Australia has granted entry to about 1,200 tennis players, staff and officials for the Australian Open. The contingent – which has recorded at least nine infections – is under quarantine.

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Covid: Brisbane to enter three-day lockdown over single infection




The Australian city of Brisbane has begun a snap three-day lockdown after a cleaner in its hotel quarantine system became infected with coronavirus.

Health officials said the cleaner had the highly transmissible UK variant and they were afraid it could spread.

Brisbane has seen very few cases of the virus beyond quarantined travellers since Australia’s first wave last year.

It is the first known instance of this variant entering the Australian community outside of hotel quarantine.

The lockdown is for five populous council areas in Queensland’s state capital.

Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk announced the measure on Friday morning local time, about 16 hours after the woman tested positive.

Ms Palaszczuk said the lockdown aimed to halt the virus as rapidly as possible, adding: “Doing three days now could avoid doing 30 days in the future.”

“I think everybody in Queensland… knows what we are seeing in the UK and other places around the world is high rates of infection from this particular strain,” she said.

“And we do not want to see that happening here in our great state.”

Australia has reported 28,500 coronavirus infections and 909 deaths since the pandemic began. By contrast, the US, which is the hardest-hit country, has recorded more than 21 million infections while nearly 362,000 people have died of the disease.The lockdown will begin at 18:00 on Friday (08:00 GMT) in the Brisbane city, Logan and the Ipswich, Moreton and Redlands local government areas.

Residents will only be allowed to leave home for certain reasons, such as buying essential items and seeking medical care.

For the first time, residents in those areas will also be required to wear masks outside of their homes.

Australia has faced sporadic outbreaks over the past year, with the most severe one in Melbourne triggering a lockdown for almost four months.

A pre-Christmas outbreak in Sydney caused fresh alarm, but aggressive testing and contact-tracing has kept infection numbers low. The city recorded four local cases on Friday.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison’s government has pledged to start mass vaccinations in February instead of March as was planned.

Lockdown interrupts ‘near normal’ life in Brisbane

Simon Atkinson, BBC News in Brisbane

At 8:00 today I popped to the local supermarket for some bread, milk – and because it’s summer here – a mango. I was pretty much the only customer.

When I went past the same shop a couple of hours later it was a different story – 50 people standing in the drizzle – queuing to get inside as others emerged with bulging shopping bags. “Heaps busier than Christmas,” a cheery trolley attendant told me. “It’s off the scale”.

Despite the “don’t panic” messages from authorities, pictures on social media show it’s a pattern being repeated across the city.

While shutdowns are common around the world, the tough and sudden stay-at-home order for Brisbane has caught people on the hop here after months of near normality.

But while such a rapid, hard lockdown off the back of just a single case of Covid-19 will seem crazy in some parts of the world, I’ve not come across too many people complaining.

And I don’t think that’s just because Aussies love to follow a rule. This is the first time the UK variant of the virus has been detected in the community in Australia.

And nobody here wants Brisbane to go through what Melbourne suffered last year. Even if it means going without mangoes.

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