US President Joe Biden unveils plan to cut methane emissions

Joe Biden launches US-EU-led effort to cut methane emissions by 30% over the next decade

About a month and a half before the 26th Conference of the Parties (COP26), the United Nations climate conference in Glasgow, US President Joe Biden announced the Global Methane Pledge, a US-led effort EU to reduce methane emissions by a third by the end of this decade. Mr Biden made the announcement at the Major Economies on Energy and Climate (MEF) Forum, hosted virtually by the White House on Friday, in which leaders of several countries and the EU, as well as the Secretary UN General António Guterres and (from India) Environment Minister Bhupender Yadav attended.

“This will not only rapidly reduce the rate of global warming, but it will also produce a very valuable secondary benefit, such as improved public health and agricultural production,” Biden said of the initiative.

“We are mobilizing support to help developing countries who join in and commit to doing something important – engage and grab this virtual [vital] opportunity, ”he said.

Methane, a greenhouse gas, is 80 times more powerful than carbon dioxide in terms of its global warming capacity. About 40% of the methane emitted comes from natural sources and about 60% comes from sources of human influence, including animal husbandry, rice cultivation, biomass combustion, etc.

“We are quickly running out of time,” Guterres told MEF on Friday. The world is on a catastrophic path to 2.7 degrees Celsius warming. There is a high risk of failure of COP26. Countries will meet in Glasgow in November to review progress made since the Paris Agreement (2015) on the climate, with some countries pledging to achieve net zero emissions by 2050. The Paris agreement aims to maintain rising temperatures to less than 2 degrees Celsius (and to pursue the goal of limiting increases to less than 1.5 degrees Celsius) above pre-industrial levels by encouraging countries to commit to reducing their emissions.

Kerry’s visit to India

US climate envoy John Kerry, who also spoke to the MEF, was invited by Mr. Biden to chair a ministerial session with India, China, Russia and Germany, according to the House White. Mr Kerry has just returned from a visit to New Delhi where he tried unsuccessfully to get the government to commit to ‘net zero’ by 2050, according to a report by The Hindu.

India has announced a renewable energy capacity target of 450 GW by 2030 and Indian Railways has pledged to achieve “net” emissions by that year, but India as a whole does not. has not committed to a timeline to achieve this goal. Some 130 countries are considering a goal of net zero emissions by 2050.


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Kevin E. Boling

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