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The U.S. signed a climate change agreement that omits any mention of human causeby Erik Tavcar
Issues

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson signed a climate agreement in Fairbanks, Alaska to close the tenth meeting of the Arctic Council, but the statement omits any mention of the human impact on the climate.  

The agreement acknowledges the "vital importance for human health of a healthy natural environment in the Arctic" and welcomes "the advancements made to reduce pollutants, such as dioxins, furans, heavy metals, as well as black carbon, and encourage continued work on these issues at all levels"


Professor John Walsh, chief scientist at the University of Alaska's International Arctic Research Center,  told the BBC the statement echoes the approach of the Obama administration.

In the agreement the countries recognize - "climate change is the most serious threat to Arctic biodiversity" and the "importance of climate science to our understanding of the changing Arctic region and our activities in the Arctic environment."  

But climate scientists are troubled the declaration doesn't mention the Paris Climate Agreement.  

Trump vowed to pull the U.S. out of the 194-nation accord and  EPA administrator Scott Pruitt  came out against the pact.  White House chief strategist Steve Bannon has also been against plan.  

But Tillerson has said the U.S. has more to gain than lose from the Paris agreement. The president's daughter, Ivanka Trump, has declared support for the Paris Climate Agreement. 

Watch | U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson remarks at the Arctic Council

At the Arctic Council Tillerson said the U.S. is "currently reviewing several important policies, including how the Trump administration will approach the issue of climate change. "

"We’re not going to rush to make a decision. We’re going to work to make the right decision for the United States. The Arctic Council will continue to be an important platform as we deliberate on these issues," Tillerson said.