Arnold Schwarzenegger has escalated his feud with Donald Trump after the President withdrew from the Paris Agreement on climate change.
Schwarzenegger, who has served two terms as the Governor of California, released a video of himself addressing Trump directly, warning: “One man cannot stop our clean energy revolution” or “destroy our progress.”
Channelling one of his most famous roles, The Terminator actor wryly reminded the President: “One man cannot go back in time, only I can do that.”
Urging Trump to “protect the people”, Schwarzenegger cited 200,000 annual deaths in the US from air pollution as he implored: “Please Mr President, choose the future.”
Scientists say Earth is likely to reach more dangerous levels of warming sooner as a result of the president’s decision because America’s pollution contributes so much to rising temperatures. Calculations suggest withdrawal from the Paris accord could result in emissions of up to 3 billion tons of additional carbon dioxide a year - enough to melt ice sheets faster, raise seas higher and trigger more extreme weather.
Schwarzenegger added: “No one remembers the people who told President Kennedy not to go to the Moon. We remember the great leaders.
“The great leaders that don’t walk backwards into the past but great leaders that charge forward towards the future.”
The 69-year-old called on citizens to “rise up” and start a clean energy revolution themselves, stating people couldn’t “sit back and just do nothing while people are getting sick and dying… especially when you know there’s another way.”
Trump and Schwarzenegger, who replaced him on game show The Apprentice have a history of bad blood, with the President frequently rubbishing the actor’s ratings for the programme.
Trump chose to let rip at Schwarzenegger during a National Prayer Breakfast in February, claiming the actor had sent the show’s figures “right down the tubes” and branding him a “total disaster.”
Schwarzenegger replied, suggesting: “Hey Donald, I have a great idea: Why don’t we switch jobs? You take over TV because you’re such an expert in ratings, and I take over your job, so then people can finally sleep comfortably again.”
In March Schwarzenegger took the opportunity to mock the President’s own sliding approval ratings, musing: “That’s not what you call ‘making America great again’. Come on!”