After speaking at COP27 on Friday, President Biden flew to Indonesia where he met with Xi Jinping ahead of the G20 summit. The leaders’ rapprochement and renewed cooperation on climate change was welcomed as ‘essential’ for COP27 talks.
US President Joe Biden and Chinese Leader Xi Jinping agreed on Monday to resume cooperation on climate change, offering a much-needed boost to downbeat COP27 negotiations.
The leaders of the world’s largest economies and biggest emitters of greenhouse gases met at the G20 summit in Bali, Indonesia. It was the first in-person meeting since President Biden took office last year and the first time they spoke since Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s controversial Taiwan visit earlier this year, which led to the suspension of the cooperation on climate change Beijing and Washington had agreed on at last year’s COP26 summit in Glasgow.
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Xi and Biden will “work together to address transnational challenges” – a White House readout of the meeting said. Climate change, global macroeconomic stability, and food security amid the conflict in Ukraine were cited as the most pressing global issues the two discussed.
News of the renewed long-stalled cooperation on climate change between China and the US brought relief to COP27 negotiators in Egypt, who were hoping the G20 meeting could lead to more cash and bold commitments in the fight against global warming. “This unequivocal signal from the two largest economies to work together to address the climate crisis is more than welcome, it’s essential,” said Manish Bapna, president and chief executive officer of the US non-profit Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC).
“There is no way in which we can address the climate challenge that we face without the co-operation of all G20 members and in particular without the co-operation of the two biggest economies, the United States and China,” UN Secretary-General António Guterres said. “And I am very happy that the countries had a summit today.”
Speaking in Bali on Monday, Guterres urged G20 countries – responsible for 80% of global emissions – to accelerate the transition to clean energy and “provide governments of the Global South with investments and liquidity, and offer debt relief and restructuring.”
“Action – or inaction – by the G20 will determine whether every member of our human family has a chance to live sustainably and peacefully, on a healthy planet,” he added.
Featured Image: AP
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