President Biden leads global effort to address the world's climate change crisis

MAR. 26, 2021

President Joe Biden has invited Russian president Vladimir Putin and China's president Xi Jinping to the first major climate summit of his nascent administration, the Leaders Summit on Climate.

Biden's predecessor Donald Trump mocked the science underlying urgent warnings on global warming and the resulting worsening of droughts, floods, hurricanes, and other natural disasters.

The summit will "underscore the urgency – and the economic benefits – of stronger climate action," according to the White House.

Rivals Putin and Xi are among 40 world leaders that Biden invited to participate in the summit, which he will host virtually on April 22 and 23. The summit will "underscore the urgency – and the economic benefits – of stronger climate action," according to the White House.

The list of 40 world leaders participating in the event includes President David Kabua, Republic of the Marshall Islands.

The Biden administration intentionally looked beyond its international partners for the talks, an administration official said.

“It’s a list of the key players and it’s about having some of the tough conversations and the important conversations,” the official said, speaking on condition of anonymity to discuss U.S. plans for the event. “Given how important … this issue is to the entire world, we have to be willing to talk about it and we have to be willing to talk about it at the high levels.”

The key themes of the summit will include, according to the White House:

Galvanizing efforts by the world’s major economies to reduce emissions during this critical decade to keep a limit to warming of 1.5 degree Celsius within reach.

Mobilizing public and private sector finance to drive the net-zero transition and to help vulnerable countries cope with climate impacts.

The economic benefits of climate action, with a strong emphasis on job creation, and the importance of ensuring all communities and workers benefit from the transition to a new clean energy economy.

Spurring transformational technologies that can help reduce emissions and adapt to climate change, while also creating enormous new economic opportunities and building the industries of the future.

Showcasing subnational and non-state actors that are committed to green recovery and an equitable vision for limiting warming to 1.5 degree Celsius, and are working closely with national governments to advance ambition and resilience.

Discussing opportunities to strengthen capacity to protect lives and livelihoods from the impacts of climate change, address the global security challenges posed by climate change and the impact on readiness, and address the role of nature-based solutions in achieving net zero by 2050 goals.

The list of world leaders participating in the event is as follows, per the White House:

Prime Minister Gaston Browne, Antigua and Barbuda
President Alberto Fernandez, Argentina
Prime Minister Scott Morrison, Australia
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, Bangladesh
Prime Minister Lotay Tshering, Bhutan
President Jair Bolsonaro, Brazil
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, Canada
President Sebastián Piñera, Chile
President Xi Jinping, People’s Republic of China
President Iván Duque Márquez, Colombia
President Félix Tshisekedi, Democratic Republic of the Congo
Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen, Denmark
President Ursula von der Leyen, European Commission
President Charles Michel, European Council
President Emmanuel Macron, France
President Ali Bongo Ondimba, Gabon
Chancellor Angela Merkel, Germany
Prime Minister Narendra Modi, India
President Joko Widodo, Indonesia
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Israel
Prime Minister Mario Draghi, Italy
Prime Minister Andrew Holness, Jamaica
Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga, Japan
President Uhuru Kenyatta, Kenya
President David Kabua, Republic of the Marshall Islands
President Andrés Manuel López Obrador, Mexico
Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern, New Zealand
President Muhammadu Buhari, Nigeria
Prime Minister Erna Solberg, Norway
President Andrzej Duda, Poland
President Moon Jae-in, Republic of Korea
President Vladimir Putin, The Russian Federation
King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia
Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong, Singapore
President Matamela Cyril Ramaphosa, South Africa
Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez, Spain
President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, Turkey
President Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, United Arab Emirates
Prime Minister Boris Johnson, United Kingdom
President Nguyễn Phú Trọng, Vietnam
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