Joe Biden unveiled, Thursday, April 22, during his climate summit, a new target for reducing polluting emissions almost doubled compared to the previous one, to mark the return of the United States in the fight against global warming.
The US president promised, at the opening of this two-day virtual meeting with some 40 world leaders, to reduce his country’s greenhouse gas emissions from 50% to 52% by 2030 compared to in 2005, i.e. double Washington’s former commitment – 26% to 28% by 2025.
Warning against “The cost of inaction” and extolling the economic benefits “Extraordinary” that may stem from ecological reforms, Joe Biden urged the rest of the world to follow the American example on behalf of a “Moral and economic imperative”. “We must take action, all of us”, “We must accelerate”, he said, recalling that“No country [pouvait] solve this crisis on your own “.
Emmanuel Macron greeted the “Historical choice” of Joe Biden and asked to“Accelerate the implementation of commitments for the 2030 horizon”, with “An action plan that is precise, measurable, verifiable”. “It will be at the heart of European action precisely in the coming months”, added the head of state. He also asked to “Fundamentally transform our financial system”. “France will take all its responsibilities in the coming months to go further on the subject of this finance in the service of the climate”, he said.
The 46e President of the United States joined from the first day of his presidency, in January, the Paris agreement on the climate of which Donald Trump had slammed the door. Since then, in contrast to the climate-skeptic discourse of his predecessor, Joe Biden has declined the warnings on “The emergency” to avoid a “Disaster”. And he unveiled a far-reaching plan for American infrastructure with an important ecological transition component.
But he is expected at the turn: before putting pressure on other global polluters to accelerate the fight against global warming, he must reassure his country’s inconstancy in this matter. Chinese diplomacy mocked last week “A bad pupil who returns to the school benches after having skipped lessons”.
Progress report before COP26
Joe Biden’s new commitment must allow the US economy to achieve carbon neutrality – that is, to absorb as much CO2 that it emits – by 2050.
The American contribution, which is ambitious, aims to help keep global warming below + 2 ° C compared to the pre-industrial era, as provided for in the Paris Agreement. An objective beyond reach given the current state of national commitments.
The major invited powers, which together represent 80% of global emissions, have announced their measures for the major UN conference, COP26, scheduled to be held at the end of the year in Glasgow, Scotland.
China, the leading emitter of greenhouse gases, has committed to “Cooperate” against warming with the second, the United States – the opposing superpowers putting aside their other differences on this occasion.
Also at odds with the Americans, Vladimir Poutine recalled, without however giving any figures, his ambition to “Considerably limit emissions” of Russia by 2050. “It is with responsibility that Russia implements its international obligations in this area”, he said, citing the Kyoto Protocol and the Paris Agreement. He also stressed that his country’s current emissions were 1.6 billion tonnes of CO2, against 3.1 billion tonnes of CO2 in 1990, half as much.
As for the European Union (EU), it reached an agreement at the last minute on a net reduction of“At least 55%” of its emissions by 2030 compared to 1990 levels.
Prime Minister of Canada Justin Trudeau to pledge to reduce CO emissions2 from 40% to 45% by 2030 compared to 2005, instead of 30% previously, according to Radio-Canada. And his Japanese counterpart Yoshihide Suga announced that Japan would reduce them by 46% by 2030 compared to 2013, against a previous target of 26%.
Even Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro, close to Donald Trump but less to Joe Biden, has announced that his country is now aiming for carbon neutrality by 2050, ten years earlier than the previously announced target. He is also committed to “Eliminate illegal deforestation in Brazil by 2030”.