At odds with Trump, Tim Cook, other tech CEOs, sign renewed commitment to Paris Agreement

Despite having a seemingly cordial relationship with President Trump, Apple CEO Tim Cook reiterated one grave area of disagreement on Monday — the Paris Agreement.

Cook, along with several other tech CEOs such as Microsoft’s Satya Nadella, Tesla’s Elon Musk and Google’s Sundar Pichai, signed a statement that says these companies will continue to support the 2015 Paris Agreement to help counter the effects of climate change, but also position the U.S. for a new economic age.

“Participation in the Paris Agreement enables us to plan for a just transition and create new decent, family-supporting jobs and economic opportunity,” the group of CEOs, whose companies employ more than 2 million people in the U.S., wrote in the letter.

File photo: President Donald Trump talks to Apple Inc. CEO Tim Cook during the American Workforce Policy Advisory Board's first meeting in the State Dining Room of the White House in Washington, Wednesday, March 6, 2019. (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta)

File photo: President Donald Trump talks to Apple Inc. CEO Tim Cook during the American Workforce Policy Advisory Board’s first meeting in the State Dining Room of the White House in Washington, Wednesday, March 6, 2019. (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta)

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Cook also tweeted about the letter, noting “[h]umanity has never faced a greater or more urgent threat than climate change — and it’s one we must face together.”

“Staying in the Paris Agreement will strengthen our competitiveness in global markets, positioning the United States to lead the deployment of new technologies that support the transition, provide for our workers and communities, and create jobs and companies built to last,” the executives continued. “It also supports investment by setting clear goals which enable long-term planning. It encourages innovation to achieve emissions reductions at low cost.”

The letter specifically asks the U.S. to reconsider staying in the Paris Agreement. In early November, the Trump administration began its formal withdrawal from the landmark agreement.

“Two years ago, we knew that supporting the Paris Agreement was what was needed to help keep companies competitive and thriving under the shifting expectations of Americans. We stand with the 77 [percent] of registered American voters and over 4,000 American states, cities and businesses supporting the Paris Agreement,” the letter reads, adding that while there has been progress, more work is needed to combat the effects of climate change.

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“This moment calls for greater, more accelerated action than we’ve seen. It calls for the strong policy framework the Paris Agreement provides, one that allows the US the freedom to choose our own path to emissions reductions,” the letter concludes. “The promise of the Paris Agreement is one of a just and prosperous world. We urge the United States to join us in staying in.”

The Executive Council & Chair of International Committee of the AFL-CIO also signed the letter, with the group representing an additional 12.5 million American workers.

The letter comes shortly after a group of Apple employees expressed their support for Cook’s efforts to lobby Trump on behalf of the company.

The survey, conducted for Fortune by anonymous workplace social network Blind, shows that 81.6 percent of the tech giant’s employees support Cook in his efforts to speak directly with Trump on issues that affect the company and help “shape policy in Apple’s favor.”

The two men have had a relationship seemingly since the start of Trump’s presidency, one that has appeared to have only grown over time.

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In March, Trump said that Cook had “become a friend of mine” during a meeting for the president’s American Workforce Policy Advisory Board. Separately during that meeting, Trump mistakenly called Cook “Tim Apple” in a slip of the tongue. Cook later decided to have a bit of fun at the president’s expense, changing the name of his Twitter account to Tim Apple.

The 58-year-old Cook is one of the few CEOs in America with a direct line to Trump, according to an October report in The Wall Street Journal. “He’s [Cook] a great executive,” The Journal quoted Trump as saying, with the president adding “[o]thers go out and hire very expensive consultants. Tim Cook calls Donald Trump directly.”

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Originally appeared at
The Daily Caller