Former Vice President Al Gore has blasted President Donald Trump for withdrawing the U.S. from the Paris climate agreement (video below).
On July 17, Gore began to make the media rounds to promote his new documentary film, "An Inconvenient Sequel: Truth to Power."
The former vice president and climate activist asserted that Trump's energy and environmental policies would hurt U.S. standing on the world stage and worsen the impact of climate change.
"We've never had a president who's deliberately made decisions, the effect of which is to tear down America's standing in the world, starting with his withdrawal from the Paris agreement," Gore told Today. "The climate crisis is by far the most serious challenge we face, but he's also undermined our alliances, such as NATO, and hurt our standing in the world in many ways."
Later that evening, Gore reflected on his private conversation with Trump about the Paris accord during an interview on CBS' "The Late Show with Stephen Colbert."
"I went to Trump Tower after the election," Gore said. "I thought there was a chance he would come to his senses. But I was wrong."
The former vice president said he was still hopeful the U.S. could reduce its carbon output, citing efforts on the state level.
"Here in the U.S., a lot of our most important governors and majors and business leaders said: 'We're still in the Paris agreement, and we're going to meet the commitments of the country regardless of what Donald Trump tweets.'"
In December 2016, Ivanka Trump invited Gore to meet the president at Trump Tower in Manhattan, New York.
"I had a lengthy and very productive session with the president-elect," Gore told reporters after the meeting, according to The New York Times. "It was a sincere search for areas of common ground."
On June 1, Trump announced from the White House that he would withdraw the U.S. from the Paris climate agreement, an international pact among more than 190 countries agreeing to reduce their carbon emissions to curb the impact of climate change.
"We want fair treatment," Trump said. "We don't want other countries and other leaders to laugh at us anymore."
Former Secretary of State John Kerry, a former Democratic nominee for president, like Gore, swiftly blasted Trump's decision.
"This is one of the most cynical and frankly ignorant and dangerous, self-destructive steps that I've seen in public life," Kerry told CNN.