PM says only ‘six in 10’ chance of meeting $100bn target in time for Glasgow summit
USAs president Joe Biden has given a big boost to Boris Johnson’s faltering preparations for November’s Klima forandringer summit in Glasgow, announcing he will double the US contribution to a $100bn-a-year fund to help developing countries adapt.
The announcement brings the fund to around $85bn – still $15bn short of the total which rich countries pledged that they would deliver by a deadline of 2020.
Mr Johnson admitted this week that he had only a six in 10 chance of hitting the crucial target by the time he hosts the UN COP26 summit in six weeks’ time.
Mr Biden had already doubled the US contribution to climate finance to $5.6bn in April this year, and today told the United Nations that he would now work with Congress to do the same again.
Speaking to the UN general assembly in New York, the US president described climate change and the continuing coronavirus pandemic as “urgent and looming crises wherein lie enormous opportunities,” if the globe can “work together to seize” them.
He warned that the world will face further pandemics, and that without action on pollution, humanity will suffer “the merciless march of ever-worsening droughts and floods, more intense fires and hurricanes” and intensifying heat waves and sea level rises.
“Instead of continuing to fight the wars of the past, we are fixing our eyes and devoting our resources to the challenges that hold the keys to our collective future,” he said in his first general assembly address since entering the White House in January.
The $100bn (£73bn) fund, first promised at the Copenhagen climate summit in 2009, is intended to help low-income countries invest in alternative energy supplies to reduce their dependance on fossil fuels like coal, as well as to adapt to a likely future of extreme weather, droughts and natural disasters caused by global warming.
OECD figures showed last week that only $79.6bn (£58bn) was mobilised by richer countries in 2019 – 2 percentage points up from the previous year but still well short of the for 2020.
Mr Johnson has made hitting the target a key goal of the Glasgow gathering, alongside improved commitments to cut carbon emissions, phase out coal power and switch to electric cars.