Tech calls Trump's Paris pullout "incredibly shortsighted"

Industry leaders say they will continue to combat the effects of climate change

Leaders of some of the world's largest tech companies have expressed "deep disappointment" over news that the US will withdraw from the Paris climate agreement.

Appeals from world leaders and technology companies for the US to remain with the accord were dismissed on Thursday when Donald Trump announced that he would be pulling out of the agreement, which is signed by 195 other nations.

The deal aimed to slow the pace of climate change by limiting carbon emissions, which has been largely embraced by business communities, particularly the US tech industry.

Reaction from industry leaders was swift and damning, with the likes of Amazon, Google, IBM and Twitter calling the move "incredibly short-sighted".

"Decision to withdraw from the #ParisAgreement was wrong for our planet," Apple CEO Tim Cook tweeted on Thursday. "Apple is committed to fight climate change and we will never waver." He also said that despite repeated attempts to appeal to Trump, these had ultimately failed to change his mind.

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Facebook's Mark Zuckerberg said that the decision is "bad for the environment, bad for the economy, and it puts our children's future at risk". The CEO also said that Facebook would remain committed to preventing climate change, and pledged that every new data centre built would be powered entirely by renewable energy.

Tesla CEO Elon Musk, who has remained close to Trump despite his attacks on the US technology sector, announced that he would be stepping down from the presidential advisory council, stating that leaving Paris "is not good for America or the world".

Although IBM still supports US participation in the Paris accord, it confirmed in a statement that its CEO, Ginni Rometty, would remain a part of Trump's advisory committee. "IBM believes that it is easier to lead outcomes by being at the table, as a participant in the agreement, rather than from outside it," the statement read.

Microsoft's president Brad Smith said he was "disappointed with today's decision by the White House".

"In the past few months, Microsoft has actively engaged the Trump Administration on the business case for remaining in the Paris Agreement," said Smith, in a statement published on LinkedIn. "We've sent letters to and held meeting on this topic with senior officials in the State Department and the White House."

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"We remain steadfastly committed to the sustainability, carbon and energy goals that we have set as a company and to the Paris Agreement's ultimate success. Our experience shows us that these investments and innovations are good for our planet, our company, our customers and the economy."

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