mike-bloomberg
Special envoy to the United Nations for climate change Michael Bloomberg /REUTERS/Yuri Gripas

Climate change crusader and former mayor of New York, Michael Bloomberg, has said he will pay $4.5 million to cover this year’s lapsed US commitment to the Paris climate agreement.

Trump announced that he was withdrawing the U.S. from the deal last year, saying it was a “terrible deal” which would “undermine” the economy and put the US at a “permanent disadvantage”.

Bloomberg, whose net worth is approximately $50 billion, made the pledge on Earth Day, to the network CBS.

In his announcement to the channel, he said: “America made a commitment and, as an American, if the government’s not going to do it then we all have a responsibility … I’m able to do it. So, yes, I’m going to send them a cheque for the monies that America had promised to the organization as though they got it from the federal government.”

He did not commit to providing funds beyond 2018 and said he hoped that by next year Trump would have changed his mind.

The president, he said, should be able to: “listen to others and change his mind. A person that doesn’t change their mind isn’t very smart … And he’s been known to change his mind”.

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