Donald Trump declares flooding disaster day after US withdraws from Paris climate change agreement

Climate researcher bemoans 'mounting ironies' in President's approach to issue

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The Independent US

Donald Trump declared a major flooding disaster in Missouri just a day after pulling the US out of the Paris climate agreement.

"Historic" flooding that began in April has destroyed or damaged 1,200 homes and caused at least $58m (£45m) in damage to public infrastructure in the mid-Western state, according to its State Emergency Management Agency.

On 2 June Mr Trump approved state Governor Eric Greitens' request to declare the catastrophe a major disaster, the day after he had withdrawn the US, one of the world's biggest polluters, from the climate change accord joined by almost every country on Earth.

Climate researcher Dr John Abraham said there were "mounting ironies" around the decision.

He said: "As the Earth warms, it means that the atmosphere holds more moisture year round. That moisture falls during storms as rain.

"What’s interesting is that the result is more of the most severe rains. That is, when it rains, it’s raining harder. Consequently, more flooding occurs."

Writing in The Guardian, he added: "The kinds of extreme weather we are seeing now will continue to get worse and cause far more damage in the future."

France's new President Emmanuel Macron is trying to keep up the momentum on the landmark accord that was reached in the French capital in 2015, after Mr Trump's decision drew condemnation from world leaders.

France will go beyond its initial commitments with new policies and a website dedicated to attracting climate change researchers from the US and other countries, its government said.