Biden pledges to double climate aid, key issue at UN meeting

President Biden said on Tuesday his administration would seek to double aid to help developing countries tackle climate change, raising ...


President Biden said on Tuesday his administration would seek to double aid to help developing countries tackle climate change, raising the pledge he made in April to around $ 11.4 billion a year by 2024.

The engagement is seen as critical to the success of the United Nations-led climate talks due to take place in Glasgow in November, although the realization of the money depends on congressional approval.

Climate change is perhaps the most important topic of this year’s General Assembly meeting, with new scientific evidence showing a losing battle in what United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres has said. called an existential struggle.

Many developing countries have repeatedly pointed out that rich countries have failed to deliver the $ 100 billion a year in aid they pledged under the landmark 2015 Paris climate agreement. A count by the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development revealed a shortfall of nearly $ 20 billion.

Earlier this year, Biden pledged $ 5.7 billion, a sum that also requires congressional approval.

Mr Guterres warned that failure to keep those promises could jeopardize cooperation to curb global greenhouse gas emissions and avoid the worst effects of global warming. “It is a crucial matter of confidence,” he said at a climate summit hosted by the White House last week.

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, who will host the Glasgow talks, led a preparatory meeting with Mr Guterres on Monday. Mr Johnson then told reporters that the November rally would be “a turning point for the world, and this is the time when we need to grow up and take responsibility.”

The scientific consensus is that the increase in global temperature should be limited to 1.5 degrees Celsius. Beyond this threshold, the likelihood of devastating consequences is much greater, such as widespread crop failures and the collapse of polar ice caps.

“We are no longer on the wrong track, we are on the edge of the cliff,” Abdulla Shahid, Maldives’ foreign minister who chairs the General Assembly, said on Tuesday. The low-lying Maldives is one of many countries at risk of devastating flooding due to rising sea levels.

In total, nearly 200 countries have committed to reducing or slowing greenhouse gas emissions under the Paris Agreement. But new commitments from 70 countries are still missing, including China, which currently produces the largest share of greenhouse gas emissions, and India and Saudi Arabia, two large economies with a significant climate footprint. Brazil, Mexico and Russia have submitted new commitments that have lower emissions targets than their previous ones.

Mr Biden’s revised pledge would make the United States, the largest emitter of greenhouse gases since the start of the industrial age, among the world’s largest climate donors, although advocacy groups have said said they were still falling short of Washington’s fair share.

“It’s good to see President Biden increasing the amount of the US contribution,” Mohamed Adow, director of Power Shift Africa, said in a statement. “However, the United States is still sorely lacking in what it owes.”

Tina Stege, the Marshall Islands climate envoy, said: “Watching Biden’s speech today, I thought – this is the announcement we’ve been waiting for. Now we look to Congress to work with Biden and the rest of the G20 to follow suit. “

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Newsrust - US Top News: Biden pledges to double climate aid, key issue at UN meeting
Biden pledges to double climate aid, key issue at UN meeting
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