U.S. President Joe Biden said Sunday that he is “disappointed” with China, Russia and Saudi Arabia in their fight against the climate crisis, after those nations failed to commit during the G-20 summit to strive to limit global warming to 1.5 degrees.
“The disappointment relates to the fact that Russia and China did not present commitments to address climate change,” Biden told a press conference in Rome, where he also criticized the absence of Saudi Arabia.
The G-20 summit that was being held hours before the COP26 Climate Summit could not end without an agreement and the leaders of these countries have reached one: the global warming ceiling will be 1.5 degrees and, in addition, they will take action to tackle the problem.
Thus, the G20 heads of state or government have now agreed to take “mitigation, adaptation and financing” actions for this purpose in “this critical decade”, although with an important nuance: “based on national circumstances”.
The leaders also agreed in Rome to end funding for new coal plants abroad, but did not set a specific year for achieving net zero greenhouse gas emissions.
In this regard, Biden assured that the Twenty have achieved “significant progress”, although he acknowledged that “much remains to be done”.
However, neither China nor Russia, the world’s leading and fourth largest emitters of CO2, which together emit more than 40% of the total amount of this gas that the world releases into the atmosphere, took part in these talks.
“This effort is going to require us to continue to focus on what China is not doing, what Russia is not doing and what Saudi Arabia is not doing,” he said.