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Speaking at the International Arctic Forum in Arkhangelsk on Thursday,Russian President Vladimir Putin said that global warming is real,but has been going on long before the “man-made effects” that climate science points to as its primary cause.

“What I’m about to say may be unpopular. But we will respect the various agreements and Russia will do just that, just like we abided by the Kyoto protocols.Yesterday I visited the French archipelago and back in 1930s I think, an Austrian pioneer and researcher visited that place and issued a description of the glacier and twenty years later an Italian king visited and found that ice cover had melted.

This warming started back in the 1930s. And back then, we did not have not have these man-made effects, but the warming was already there. It’s not a question of prevention, I agree with those who say it’s not a matter of prevention because you can’t prevent it. Global warming may be a global trend, a global cycle. A planetary cycle. You just need to adjust to that. ”

The Kremlin strongman added: “The issue is not stopping it… because that’s impossible, since it could be tied to some global cycles on Earth or even of planetary significance. The issue is to somehow adapt to it.”

At the International Arctic Forum in Arkhangelsk,Russia, Putin was asked about the rollback of environmental regulations from U.S. President Donald Trump’s administration.

“Those people who are not in agreement with opponents of climate change may not be at all silly,” Putin replied via an interpreter.

As a compromise to Washington’s environmental position, Moscow would attempt to meet the U.S. halfway to find a solution.

“It is about trying to reach each other half way and seeking trade-offs,” he said. “I would not dramatize things and I wouldn’t use these global factors for the domestic American political struggle.”

White House announced that President Donald Trump would decide by May on continued US participation in the landmark Paris Agreement limiting global carbon emissions before a meeting of G7 leaders in Sicily that is scheduled to begin May 26.

Trump signed an executive order on Tuesday to reverse regulations imposed by the Obama administration that had been designed to curb the devastating impact of climate change.

Trump’s Energy Independence Executive Order effectively suspends over six measures ratified by his predecessor, and though businesses have welcomed the move, environmental campaigners and many world leaders have condemned the action.

Russia’s president also pointed to the economic importance of the Arctic region as he argued global warming and ice melting in the area created beneficial conditions for economic improvement.

“Climate change brings in more favorable conditions and improves the economic potential of this region,” he said. “Today, Russia’s GDP is the result of the economic activity of this region.” Putin explained as he revealed that 10 percent of his country’s GDP is linked to the Arctic region.

Russia is warming at twice the rate of the rest of the world, according to government data, and both scientists and emergencies officials have indicated that disasters such as deadly floods and wildfires are influenced by climate change.