Biden urges world leaders to reenergize their climate change fight – NNY360
President Joe Biden encouraged world leaders to strengthen their fight against global warming even as the war in Ukraine complicates action, insisting that “climate security and energy security go hand in hand.”
“We cannot let the critical goal of limiting global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius slip out of our reach,” Biden said Friday during a virtual summit with representatives of top-emitting countries and the European Union.
The session is the largest planned gathering of world leaders focused on climate action ahead of a critical United Nations summit in Egypt this November. It comes as record gasoline prices and war-strained energy supplies stoke calls for more fossil fuel development, potentially slowing progress in paring the greenhouse gas emissions that drive global warming.
However, Biden highlighted the war in Ukraine as evidence of the need to accelerate the clean energy transition and bolster food security. “With Russia’s war driving up inflation worldwide, threatening vulnerable countries with severe food shortages, we have to work together to mitigate the immediate fallout of this crisis,” he said.
Biden challenged countries to raise $100 million to boost fertilizer efficiency and invited other nations to join the U.S. in targeting for half of all new light duty vehicles sold by 2030 to be zero-emission models, such as electric or plug-in hybrids.
“Russia’s war is driving up prices of gas,” creating an “immediate problem” that hurts people worldwide, he said. But “over the long run we can remove the pain of volatile gas prices and reduce transportation emissions by putting more zero-emission cars on the road.”
Biden announced a series of initiatives designed to stem greenhouse gas emissions from the energy, agriculture and transportation sectors, including stepped-up commitments to combat leaks of the potent greenhouse gas methane.
The U.S. and EU are announcing next steps in a global pact to lower global methane emissions by 30% from 2020 levels by the end of the decade, which has now drawn endorsements from 120 countries.
Under a new “Global Methane Pledge Energy Pathway,” the U.S., EU, Argentina, Canada, Egypt, Mexico and other countries will aim to curb methane emissions across the energy sector, by halting the routine flaring of natural gas at oil wells and combating emissions from oil and gas infrastructure. Some $60 million will be dedicated to the effort, including at least $3.5 million from the U.S..
Other initiatives being unveiled at the summit include:
— The U.S. and Norway will call for progress on limiting greenhouse gas emissions from shipping — including through zero-emission fuels, recharging capabilities and green shipping corridors — with the goal of decarbonizing the sector by 2050.
— The U.S. will devote $21.5 billion to an initiative focused on advancing global clean-energy technologies. The International Energy Agency estimates that some $90 billion in public investments are needed to propel large-scale demonstration projects.