Climate summit: Biden sees great economic opportunities in the fight against the climate crisis


US President Joe Biden also sees great economic opportunities in the fight against the impending climate catastrophe. At the two-day online climate summit he organized with dozen heads of state and government, Biden said on Friday that the fight against global warming offers the opportunity to create millions of well-paid jobs around the world – for example through the expansion of electromobility or renewable energies. The US climate commissioner John Kerry spoke of an economic “gold mine”. However, both warned that time was pressing. Combating the climate crisis is a “moral obligation,” stressed Biden.

He had convened the climate summit to underline the urgency of the situation, but also to show that the US is back on the global stage and wants to take on a leadership role after four years of Donald Trump in climate protection. Biden called for an international show of strength to contain the climate crisis. “I know that we can do that,” he said at the end of the deliberations. “Let’s get to work.”

Biden thanked the heads of state and government at the summit for their climate protection commitments. The day before, he himself announced a new climate target for the US government: The US wants to cut its greenhouse gas emissions by at least half compared to 2005 by the end of the decade. With the new goal, they are fulfilling a requirement of the Paris climate treaty, in which Biden had returned the country on the first day in office. His predecessor Trump left the agreement. This provides that the contracting states improve their climate targets every five years. All partners are to officially do this at the World Climate Conference in Glasgow in November.

The summit hosted by Biden is seen as an important preparation for Glasgow. The US President emphasized that it was a stopover on the way there: “This summit is a beginning.”

Experts agree that much more has to be done around the world by 2030 if global warming is to remain well below two degrees, as agreed in 2015 by almost 200 countries in Paris. The earth has already heated up by around 1.2 degrees compared to pre-industrial times. On the first day of the summit, the participants pointed out the existential threat posed by the climate crisis and its already visible fatal consequences: Depending on the region, there are more heat waves and droughts as well as heavy rain, storms, storms and floods. They mainly used the second day to underline the opportunities that the fight against the crisis offers.

Kerry emphasized, “Nobody is asked to make a sacrifice.” Rather, resolute action against the climate crisis offers the opportunity to improve areas such as health, the economy, the labor market and security. Kerry also warned that the next ten years would be critical in the fight against global warming. During this time, decisions urgently need to be made to prevent the worst consequences of global warming. “This has to be the decade of choice.”

The heads of government of several countries reported on examples of how they tackle climate change and at the same time derive economic benefits from it. The Danish Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen, for example, named an energy island for storing offshore wind energy that is to be built around 80 kilometers off the coast of Jutland. It is the largest construction project in Danish history. Frederiksen said that 50 percent of Danish electricity already came from wind energy, and that this should be expanded further. The next task is to convert green energy into green fuels in order to reduce emissions from trucks, planes and ships. These innovations created numerous new jobs. Denmark has set a target of reducing the country’s greenhouse gas emissions by 70 percent by 2030 compared to 1990 levels. This is currently the most ambitious emissions target of all EU countries.

The Emirati Vice President, Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid al-Maktum, said the United Arab Emirates are one of the largest oil exporters in the world. However, you would have made the strategic decision to invest in renewable energies 15 years ago and are now operating two of the largest solar systems in the world. A third should follow. The Emirates are among the richest countries in the world thanks to their income from the oil and gas business. Despite the large resources, the sunny country tries to meet the domestic energy needs with other means.