The U.S. Special Envoy for Climate John Kerry said Wednesday the world’s developed countries - which emit most of the world's greenhouse gases - “have every capacity" to address the climate crisis.
Speaking at a joint news conference in Paris with French Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire, Kerry stressed that no one country or government can address the issue alone. Referencing the 2015 Paris Agreement, Kerry said it was about everyone accepting the same emission reduction goals.
But he said, too few nations have abided by their commitments. He said, “The point of Paris ((agreement)) is everybody has said that we will get on this road, and the problem today is we're not on that road sufficiently.”
Former U.S. president Donald Trump had withdrawn from the Paris agreement, and U.S. President Joe Biden very soon after he was sworn into office, agreed to rejoin the accord.
French Finance Minister Le Maire said France was "very happy" about the U.S. decision, telling reporters that climate issues are the "main challenge of our generation and future generations."
The 2015 Paris climate change accord commits countries to put forward plans for reducing their emissions of greenhouse gases such as carbon dioxide, which is released from burning fossil fuels.
Kerry also mentioned the international summit to be hosted by the U.S. next month, featuring 20 of the world’s major economies – and biggest polluters. The summit is expected to lay out some of the groundwork ahead of November's United Nations climate conference in Glasgow.
While in Paris, Kerry met with French President Emmanuel Macron, with whom he also discussed climate change. He told reporters they had a very thorough discussion on how critical this moment in history is to address the issue. He conveyed that Macron wants to work with Biden on the reduction of emissions as well helping provide the tools to do so.