WASHINGTON (Fwrd Axis) — England’s Prime Minister Boris Johnson and U.S. President Joe Biden urged world leaders to take “concrete action” on climate change during meetings at the UN’s General Assembly in New York on Tuesday.
Prior to his appearance, Johnson told the audience that his focus is firmly on supporting developing countries, mitigating the impact of climate change, and adapting to the crisis’ consequences.
The PM released a statement that read: “World leaders have a small window of time left to deliver on their climate commitments ahead of COP26.
“My message to those I meet this week will be clear: future generations will judge us based on what we achieve in the coming months.
“We need to continue to make a case for a sustainable recovery from coronavirus rooted in green growth. And we have a responsibility to ensure the benefits of that growth extend to all, no matter where they are born.”
Biden looked to break away from former President Donald Trump’s “America first” policies and pledged to work with other nations while establishing the United States as the leader to help allies tackle key issues.
“We will lead together with our allies and partners and in cooperation with all those who believe, as we do, that it is within our power to meet these challenges, to build a future that lifts all of our people to preserve this planet,” Biden said in his first speech as President at the United Nations General Assembly.
“We must work together like never before,” he added. “Whether we choose to fight for our shared future or not will reverberate for generations to come. Simply put, we stand, in my view, at an inflection point in history.”
After leaving the UN General Assembly, Johnson headed straight to Washington DC’s Union Station for a meeting with Biden at the White House.
Johnson praised Biden’s climate funding pledge of $11.2bn and said it was a “very, very good start” in helping deprived nations get to grips with global warming.
“I addressed the United Nations General Assembly, and I made clear that climate has to be the core area of action for all of us and — as we look ahead to the UK-hosted COP26, which I’m really anxious to attend in Glasgow in November,” Biden said at the Oval Office.
Earlier today, Downing Street officials stated that the US President’s commitment to doubling climate change funding is “instrumental” in making COP26 [a crunch climate summit] a success.
“I think the most important thing today has been your speech, Joe, to UNGA, where you made a commitment to supporting the world to adapt to climate change, doubling the American commitment. That’s very important for us,” Johnson told Biden in the Oval Office.
“There’s no question that this American action today has been a big lift and will really help us to get there.”
Earlier this year, Biden’s administration announced plans to double the nation’s annual contribution – and in his speech at the UN earlier today, Biden said this figure is doubling again to $11bn.
“The scientists and experts are telling us that we’re fast approaching a point of no return, in the literal sense, to keep within our reach the final goal of limiting global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius,” Biden said. “Every nation needs to bring their highest possible ambition to the table when we meet in Glasgow.”
In a meeting this afternoon, Johnson pressed the U.S. President on his ideas for combatting climate change, ahead of COP26 which takes place in Glasgow, this November. In the meeting, Johnson also referenced the humanitarian crisis in Afghanistan, which came as a result of the U.S. pulling out.
Biden’s announcement will assist wealthy nations in meeting a long-promised goal of delivering $100bn-a-year as a means of helping developing countries deal with the climate crisis – something Johnson noted at a roundtable meeting yesterday.