Eyes on Washington week ending 09.22.17


The U.S. and The Paris Agreement

The United States could remain in the Paris climate accord under the right conditions, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said last Sunday, signaling a shift in tone from the Trump administration, which angered allies with its decision to pull out of the agreement.

Apparently, Trump is willing to work with partners in the Paris Agreement if the United States could construct a set of terms that are fair and balanced for Americans, Tillerson said on CBS’ “Face The Nation.”

Asked if there was a chance the United States could stay in the accord, Tillerson responded, “I think under the right conditions.”

“The president said he is open to finding those conditions where we can remain engaged with others on what we all agree is still a challenging issue,” Tillerson said.

Trump’s national security adviser, H.R. McMaster, struck a similar tone in television interviews last Sunday in which he said Trump had always been willing to consider changes on the climate pact. “He left the door open to re-entering at some later time if there can be a better deal for the United States,” said McMaster said on ABC’s “This Week” program.

The Republican president fulfilled his campaign promise to pull out of the 2015 accord in June, when he announced tersely “We’re getting out.” Trump maintained the pact would undermine the U.S. economy and national sovereignty and his decision drew anger and condemnation from world leaders.

It takes four years for a country to withdraw from the Paris agreement, so the United States will be a party to the agreement until two days after Trump’s first term ends.

U.S. officials attended a meeting last Saturday of ministers from more than 30 of the nations that signed the climate change agreement. The Wall Street Journal reported that Trump administration officials said the United States would not pull out of the agreement and had not offered to re-engage in the deal.


Reminder: USDA Seeks Public Input on Updates to Animal Welfare Act Licensing

The USDA announced the agency is seeking input from the public to help determine potential updates to the Animal Welfare Act’s (AWA) licensing requirements. The Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS), within the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), is tasked with upholding and enforcing the AWA.

Each year, USDA issues nearly 6,000 licenses to people who breed, sell, or exhibit animals for commercial purposes. The department is responsible for ensuring that these licensees comply with the AWA’s humane standards of care, which enables the American public to confidently purchase pets and view animals on public display.

The full list of potential changes was published on August 24, 2017 in the Federal Register. Comments will be accepted by the agency through October 23, 2017 on the Regulations.gov website and in writing.


Endangered Species Act

Join our call to action to protect and defend the ESA! Tell Congress to protect the ESA not destroy it!
Contact the U.S. House of Representatives at www.house.gov and U.S. Senate at www.senate.gov


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