President Trump said Thursday that he had decided to withdraw the U.S. from the Paris climate deal because it imposed unfair restrictions on American energy while allowing other signatories to develop theirs.
"We have among the most abundant energy reserves on the planet," Trump said during a speech delivered at the White House. "Yet under this agreement we are effectively putting these reserves under lock and key."
Trump said he was willing to work with Democrats to re-enter the Paris pact or craft "something that's much better than the Paris accord," but only on terms that proved more favorable to the American economy.
"The reality is that withdrawing is in America's economic interest and won't matter much to the climate," Trump said. "We will be environmentally friendly, but we're not going to put our businesses out of work."
Trump argued "no responsible leader" would subject his country to a deal that imposed such strict regulations for so little benefit.
"The agreement is a massive redistribution of United States wealth to other countries," Trump said.
He noted other foreign leaders "went wild" when the Obama administration agreed to the Paris deal because they knew its terms would hamstring the U.S. economy.