G20 leaders fail to reach time-bound agreements on climate change
The final statement by the countries mentioned just the ‘relevance of achieving global net zero’ on carbon emissions ‘by or around mid-century’.
World leaders failed to arrive at a time-bound agreement on climate change as the G20 Summit ended on Sunday, reported The Hindu. The G20 or Group of 20 is an intergovernmental forum of 19 countries and the European Union.
The G20 has committed to providing $100 billion (approximately Rs 7.49 lakh crore) to help developing countries meet their clean energy target.
While the G20 leaders agreed to end international financing for new coal plants by 2021 end, they did not make any commitments on a domestic level on ending the use of the fuel for power generation.
Union Commerce Minister Piyush Goyal, who is India’s representative at the event, said a media briefing that New Delhi needs large amount of money to set up nuclear plants to cut down on the use coal usage.
“Secondly, we will need to be a member of the Nuclear Suppliers Group to ensure adequate availability of raw material for nuclear supply and several other associated concerns around cost of power,” he said.
The final statement by G20 mentioned just the “key relevance of achieving global net zero” on carbon emissions “by or around mid-century”.
Besides commitments on climate change, the countries have pushed for vaccine equality to tackle the coronavirus pandemic. The G20 leaders agreed to ensure that 70% of the world population is fully vaccinated against the coronavirus disease by mid-2022, reported Reuters. The leaders also agreed form a joint taskforce to tackle the pandemic.
They said they were creating the new body because the pandemic has exposed significant shortcomings in the world’s ability to coordinate its response.
The countries agreed that coronavirus immunisation is a “global public good” and the Covid-19 vaccines, which are deemed safe by the World Health Organization, will be accepted mutually considering laws of the countries.
They also agreed to boost the resilience of supply chains through voluntary technology transfer hubs, such as newly-established messenger RNA, or mRNA, centres in South Africa, Argentina and Brazil.
India is ready to produce over 500 crore Covid vaccines by end of 2022, says Modi at G20 summit
G20 did not meet climate hopes: UN chief
United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres had a mixed response to the climate change agreements reached at the G20 Summit but hoped for better results from the Climate Change Conference of the Parties, or COP26.
“While I welcome the G20’s recommitment to global solutions, I leave Rome with my hopes unfulfilled – but at least they are not buried,” he tweeted on Sunday. “Onwards to COP26 in Glasgow to keep the goal of 1.5 degrees alive and to implement promises on finance and adaptation for people and planet.”
The COP26 aims to discuss ways to limit global warming to well below 2 degrees Celsius, and preferably below 1.5 degrees Celsius, as compared to pre-industrial levels. This goal has been set out in the Paris agreement of 2015.
He said the G20 countries need “greater ambition” to reduce greenhouse gas emissions to achieve the the Paris climate change accord of limiting the temperature change by 1.5 degrees Celsius, reported AP.
While G20 leader acknowledged that adverse impact on climate with 1.5 degrees Celsius aim was “much lower”, they reiterated their commitment to the looser goals of the Paris climate accords that call for for keeping the increase “well under” 2 degrees Celsius and “pursuing efforts” to achieve the 1.5 degree limit.
At a press conference on October 29, Guterres had warned that even with commitments made by G20 leaders, the world faced a dire climate emergency.
“If we want real success... we need more ambition and more action,” he had said. “That will only be possible with a massive mobilization of political will. And that requires trust among the key actors.”
G20 Summit fruitful: Modi
On Sunday, Prime Minister Narendra Modi termed the G20 Summit as fruitful, and said world leaders held elaborate talks on various matters, including tackling the pandemic, improving health infrastructure, boosting economic cooperation and furthering innovation, reported PTI.
Meanwhile, at a G20 Session on “Climate Change and Environment”, Modi called on developing countries to set a target of providing at least 1% of their Gross Domestic Product, or GDP, for financing green projects in emerging economies.
By forgetting climate justice, “we are not only doing injustice to the developing countries, but we are betraying entire humanity”, he said.
The prime minister put three actionable points before the participants – create a clean energy projects fund, form a network of clean-energy research institutions in G-20 countries and set up an organisation to create global standards in the field of green hydrogen.
Goyal too had said developed countries need to reach net zero emissions faster to enable emerging economies have some “carbon space” to drive growth.
Disappointed Russia, China did not show up at summit: Joe Biden
United States President Joe Biden said he was disappointed that Russia and China did not send representatives to attend the G20 Summit in person, reported AFP.
“There’s a reason why people should be disappointed in that, I found it disappointing myself,” he said. “But what we did do, we passed a number of things here.”
He added that the US would “continue to focus on what China is not doing, what Russia is not doing, and what Saudi Arabia is not doing”.
This year’s G20 summit was held in Rome, Italy. It is centred around the theme “People, Planet, Prosperity”, which focuses on the areas of recovery from the pandemic and strengthening of global health governance.