Wednesday, October 27News That Matters

Key takeaways from today’s climate summit

Brendan Smialowski/AFP/Getty Images
Brendan Smialowski/AFP/Getty Images

Special presidential envoy for climate John Kerry offered a rebuttal to countries who may be wary of the US seeking to reemerge as a global leader on climate.

“In the course of the last month, first question out of people’s mouths was, ‘What are you guys going to do? You destroyed your credibility, left the Paris Agreement, how can we trust you? What’s going to happen in the next four years?’” he said in remarks from the White House briefing room Monday.

The answer, Kerry said, is that “no politician could change what is now happening globally in the marketplace,” going on to cite financial commitments toward the administration’s goal.

Kerry recalled signing the Paris Climate Accords five years ago today and lamented actions from the Trump administration pulling out of the historic agreement.

“Regrettably, without any facts, without any science, without any rationale that would be considered reasonable, the former president decided to pull out. He was the only president in the entire world the only chief of state in the entire world who, without any scientific evidence, decided to pull out of the Paris Agreement,” Kerry said.

That presented a challenge as Biden took office, Kerry said.

“We had to restore America’s credibility, we had to prove we were serious, and I think that today does that in many ways, and not in a chauvinistic – in a way that is sort of inappropriate to our relationship with other countries, but in a way that reinforces the fact that … we need to bring all the countries in the world to the table, we all need to raise ambition,” he said.