Boris Johnson said he fears there is only a 60% chance that the $ 100 billion in climate finance seen as essential to securing an ambitious COP26 summit outcome will be in place by the time leaders worlds will meet in Glasgow in November.
Speaking to reporters en route to New York at the start of a three-day visit to the United States, during which he hopes to “galvanize” progress towards a new climate deal, the prime minister said ‘he would urge developed countries to come forward additional funding.
“There is a round table with countries vulnerable to climate [on Monday]: They need the support of the rest of the world if they are to make the transition as they should. And the developing world is looking to us, ”he said.
“We started to emit fossil fuels, it was our country that experienced the first sustained industrial revolution. We started it, and they are looking to us to help them move beyond hydrocarbon technology. “
When asked if he thought the total of $ 100 billion could be reached this week, he replied, “Getting it all this week is going to be overkill. Get it all done by Cop, six out of 10. It’s gonna be tough.
The G7 countries pledged more than a decade ago at the Copenhagen summit to make $ 100 billion in private and public finance available to developing countries, to help them switch to low-carbon technologies and to deal with extreme weather conditions.
However, an analysis by the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) released last week suggests that so far only $ 80 billion has been raised.
G7 leaders re-committed to meeting the target at the June summit in Cornwall, but Johnson has come under fire for failing to secure concrete commitments. The UK is expected to release a breakdown of each country’s commitments by the end of this week.
Cop26 President Alok Sharma traveled to the United States with Johnson, as the United Kingdom intensifies diplomatic efforts to ensure the summit’s success.
Johnson will hold a series of bilateral meetings with other leaders and said he would pressure them over “the coal, the cars, the trees and the money.”
“We will push for everyone to come together to get rid of coal-fired power plants, like we did in the UK – a massive reduction in our dependence on coal; get rid of vehicles with thermal engines running on hydrocarbons, so that we all move towards electric vehicles; and plant hundreds of millions of hectares of trees; and get the funding to do it, ”he said.
The government has announced that £ 550m of the £ 11.6bn it has set aside for climate finance over the next five years will be allocated to developing countries, as part of the UK’s contribution to the goal of $ 100 billion.
Concerns about China’s attitude to the talks are growing, after Beijing was thwarted by the Aukus deal – the security and defense pact between Australia, the Kingdom United and the United States. Speaking on Sunday, Sharma was unable to say whether President Xi would attend Cop26.
Johnson praised China’s role in tackling the climate crisis, saying, “The Chinese have actually stepped up their efforts. They have come a long way already and I congratulate President Xi on his vision. “
He added, “Alok has already had good conversations with his Chinese counterparts about the things they want to do. I think China is extremely important in this regard, but it is showing real signs of progress. “
The Prime Minister will meet Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly this week. When asked if he would challenge the avowed climate skeptic of the Amazon rainforest fire, Johnson replied, “Yes. We want to stop and reverse the global loss of biodiversity, including in the rainforest.
“I believe it is in the long term economic interest of all rainforest countries to do this. We want to plant billions of trees, hundreds of millions of hectares.
“We want a comprehensive reforestation process. I think it’s in the long-term interest of Brazil and the Brazilian people to recognize and conserve the spectacular natural wealth they have, and I’m sure President Bolsanaro agrees with that.