Biden doubles the US climate goal

United States President Joe Biden (Photo: 123RF)

Thursday, Joe Biden, at his climate summit, will reveal a new US target to nearly double pollutant emissions, marking America’s return to the fight against global warming and pushing the rest of the world to “raise its ambitions.”

According to a US official, the 46th president of the United States will promise to cut greenhouse gas emissions from the world’s largest economy by between 50% and 52% by 2030 compared to 2005.

This goal nearly doubles Washington’s previous commitment to reduce between 26% and 28% by 2025.

The Democrat will speak in the morning before forty leaders invited to this two-day meeting, including the Chinese Xi Jinping, the Russian Vladimir Putin, the Indian Narendra Modi, the French Emmanuel Macron or even Pope Francis.

The official said his intention was: “to challenge the world to achieve its ambitions and fight the climate crisis.”

To be projected at the bend

Joe Biden has joined since the first day of his presidency, in January, to the Paris climate agreement that Donald Trump closed the door four years ago.

Since then, in contrast to the climate-skeptical rhetoric of his Republican predecessor, he has rejected warnings of “emergency” to avoid “catastrophe.” He unveiled a massive US infrastructure plan with an important environmental transition component.

But he awaits his turn when he organizes this summit to mark Earth Day. Before he pressures other global polluters to speed up the fight against global warming, he must reassure his country’s instability on this matter.

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Last week, a Chinese diplomat laughed at a “bad student who returns to school after missing out on school”.

In the absence of the United States during the Trump era, Xi Jinping won the applause at the end of 2020 by announcing that his country would start reducing carbon dioxide emissions before 2030, to achieve carbon neutrality in 2060 – that is. To absorb as much as it emits.

Joe Biden’s new commitment should allow the US economy to achieve carbon neutrality by 2050.

Above all, the American contribution, ambitious, hopes to participate in keeping global warming below +2 degrees Celsius, if possible +1.5 degrees Celsius, compared to the pre-industrial era, as expected in the Paris Agreement concluded in 2015, a far planetary goal. Fetched given the current state of national obligations.

Sino-American cooperation

On the eve of the summit, a member of the Biden team said, “Wait for action at this meeting,” a step towards the main United Nations conference, COP26, to be held at the end of the year in Glasgow, Scotland.

The main guest forces, which together account for 80% of global emissions, are doing well.

China, the first emitter of greenhouse gases, has pledged to “cooperate” against global warming with the second, the United States – the opposing superpowers, at odds, while putting their other differences aside on the occasion.

Also at odds with the Americans, Vladimir Putin promised that Russia, a major producer of hydrocarbons, would reduce the cumulative size of net greenhouse gas emissions to less than that of the European Union over the next 30 years.

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As for the European Union, it has reached agreement in extreme cases on a net reduction of “at least 55%” of greenhouse gas emissions by 2030 compared to the 1990 level.

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson must defend his beefed up plan, announced on Tuesday, to cut UK emissions by 78% by 2035 from 1990, and his Canadian counterpart Justin Trudeau will pledge to cut it from 40% to 45% by 2030 compared to 2030. 2005, instead of 30% previously, according to Radio Canada.

Japan’s Prime Minister, Yoshihide Suga, announced that Japan will reduce its carbon dioxide emissions to 46% by 2030 compared to 2013, against a previous target of 26%.

Even Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro, who is close to Donald Trump but to a lesser degree than Joe Biden, has written to the latter pledging to end illegal deforestation in the Amazon by 2030, despite observers’ skepticism.

With new announcements coming out or expected on Thursday, countries “representing more than half of the global economy” will now have pledged to cut emissions, in line, as far as they are concerned, with the global goal of reducing warming. Welcome to the summit organizer.

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