The best of EcoWatch, right in your inbox. Sign up for our email newsletter!
Obama Calls Out Trump's Attitude on Environment
In response, Obama said there was "a lot of unfinished business" when he left office, but if he had more time, he would urge a higher global focus on preserving the environment and would build on some of the progress made during his presidency.
The "single highest priority that I see globally" are the issues of environmental sustainability and climate change, he said at the Oslo Business Forum on Wednesday.
Obama noted that the Paris climate agreement was an "important step in the right direction, but it was only a first step, and so much more work needs to be done."
"Unfortunately, we have currently a U.S. administration that feels differently around these issues," Obama said, drawing laughter from the audience of business leaders.
Although Obama did not name his successor directly, the comment was a clear ding at President Donald Trump, who rejects climate science and decided to withdraw the U.S. from the Paris deal last year. Trump and his administration have rolled back a slew of environmental and climate regulations in favor of fossil fuel interests and other polluting industries.
The Associated Press even called Obama's remark a "swipe at Trump's attitude on environment."
On the plus side, Obama said that existing technologies and technological advancements can help the world achieve sustainability goals.
However, as he pointed out, "that requires a level of political and social commitment on the part of all of us—businesses, the non-profit sector, each of us as individuals."
EcoWatch Daily Newsletter
Talk is cheap, says the acting executive secretary of the United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity, who begged governments around the world to make sure that 2020 is not another year of conferences and empty promises, but instead is the year to take decisive action to stop the mass extinction of wildlife and the destruction of habitat-sustaining ecosystems, as The Guardian reported.