US reassured the Pacific Islands its commitment to avert “climate hell”


The United States of America has reassured Pacific and world leaders who are fighting for a 1.5 to Stay Alive outcome at COP27 in Sharm El-Sheikh, Egypt, of its commitment and renewed leadership to avert “climate hell.”

SPREP reported the United States President, Mr Joe Biden, highlighted his nation’s efforts to reduce emissions, advance the global climate fight and help the most vulnerable build resilience to climate impacts, during a special ticket only session at Plenary Nefertiti at the Sharm El-Sheikh International Congress Centre on Friday.

“We’re not ignoring the harbingers that are already here. It’s true so many disasters — the climate crisis is hitting hardest those countries and communities that have the fewest resources to respond and to recover,” he said. 

Among the audience at the packed-out Nefertiti plenary were Pacific leaders and delegates who have travelled a long way to join more than 55,000 registered COP27 participants.

Pacific countries have identified their thematic priorities for the conference, namely Adaptation, Mitigation and Ambition, Article 6 (on Markets and Non-market approaches), Finance, Loss and Damage, Oceans, Global Stocktake, Capacity Building and Technology, Gender, and Transparency.

To loud applause, President Biden said the United States sees their mission to avert climate catastrophe and seize a new clean energy economy not only as an imperative for our present and future, but through the eyes of history.

“The climate crisis is about human security, economic security, environmental security, national security, and the very life of the planet,” he said. “From my first days in office, my administration has led with a bold agenda to address the climate crisis and increase energy security at home and around the world. We immediately rejoined the Paris Agreement.  I apologize we ever pulled out of the agreement.”

To prove its commitment to the cause, President Biden announced the following initiatives:

Bolstering Global Climate Resilience – including doubling the U.S. pledge to the Adaptation Fund to $100 million and announcing over $150 million in new support to accelerate the President’s Emergency Plan for Adaptation and Resilience (PREPARE) efforts across Africa.  These build on the over $20 million that President Biden has announced this year to accelerate PREPARE’s work in Small Island Developing States.

Accelerating Global Climate Action – including launching a new initiative to support Egypt in deploying 10 GW of new wind and solar energy while decommissioning five GW of inefficient natural gas generation, strengthening proposed domestic methane regulations in the oil and gas sector that would reduce U.S. methane from covered sources by 87 percent below 2005 levels as well as other domestic and international action to tackle methane emissions and advance the Global Methane Pledge, and announcing new actions that would make the United States the first national government to require major suppliers to set Paris Agreement-aligned emissions reduction goals – leveraging the Federal Government’s over $630 billion in annual purchasing power.

Catalyzing Investment at The Scale Required to Tackle the Climate Crisis – including launching new and innovative approaches that strategically use public finance to unlock billions in private investment, such as the “Climate Finance +” initiative that will support developing countries in issuing green bonds; launching the Sustainable Banking Alliance to deepen developing countries’ sustainable financial markets; and making strategic investments that help to mobilize billions in private finance and facilitate the export of U.S. clean technologies.

Engaging All of Society in Tackling the Climate Crisis – including launching a Climate Gender Equity Fund, an Indigenous Peoples Finance Access Facility, and new exchanges to empower youth across the world to be leaders on resilience and clean energy in their communities.

Said President Biden: “The sum total of the actions my administration is taking puts the United States on track to achieve our Paris Agreement goal of reducing emissions 50 to 52 percent below 2005 levels by 2030.

“If we are to win this fight, we can no longer plead ignorance to consequence of actions and repeat our mistakes. If we can accelerate actions on these game-changers, we can reach our goal. But to permanently bend emissions curve, every nation must step up. The US has acted, everyone has to act, it’s a duty and responsibility of global leadership.”