COP28 UAE can make a difference, US climate envoy says

Both the US and China have reportedly agreed 'to work together to sort out their differences on fossil fuels and accelerate action on climate change'

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Angel Tesorero

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Photo: AFP
Photo: AFP

Published: Thu 30 Nov 2023, 9:11 PM

US special climate envoy John Kerry is optimistic that COP28 – which officially opened at Expo City Dubai on Thursday – will deliver positive results in climate change mitigation.

Speaking during a chance interview with Khaleej Times, the former US Secretary of State said: “I’m very hopeful that this COP can really make a difference.”

Kerry is attending the UN Climate Summit to promote the US international strategy for commercialising nuclear fusion power that reportedly has advantage over the current nuclear fission plants that split atoms. Nuclear fusion, on the other hand, is a cheap source of carbon-free electricity that does not produce long-lasting radioactive waste.

Consensus with China

Earlier, Kerry had a meeting with his Chinese counterpart climate envoy, Xie Zhenhua. Kerry was quoted after the meeting saying: "Without China and the US aggressively moving forward to reduce emissions, we don't win this battle (against climate change).

"We have decided to actually work together to get a successful COP, to get a successful global stocktake," Kerry said of his meeting with his Chinese counterpart this month.

The global stocktake is the pledge taken by world governments under the 2015 Paris Agreement during COP21 to limit temperature rises to 1.5ºC on pre-industrial levels. COP28 UAE is about taking stock of what the world has done since then.

Both the US and China have reportedly agreed “to work together to sort out their differences on fossil fuels and accelerate action on climate change.”

Meanwhile, US Vice-President Kamala Harris confirmed her attendance at COP28. She tweeted on Thursday: “I am heading to COP28 in Dubai this week. I look forward to meeting with our allies and partners as @POTUS (US President Joe Biden) and I continue our work to deliver bold global action to address the climate crisis.”

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