Climate change: major advocates drawing back

Some developed countries – who are the most vocal about the need to address climate change and its effects – have suggested that there’s a limit to how far they’re willing to go on the subject at this year’s United Nations climate summit.

Which countries are these?
The European Union and the United States have resisted efforts to put financial assistance for impoverished countries suffering from the disastrous effects of global warming firmly on the agenda for this year’s United Nations climate summit. Earlier, the UN Secretary-General, Antonio Guterres, had lamented how many countries were “dragging their feet” on climate action.

Why are these countries reluctant?
That’s not clear at the moment, though there have always been some divisions over these issues. Ironically, hopes were boosted last month, when officials from the Group of Seven leading economies (G7) admitted that more public and private money was needed to avoid and mitigate the “adverse effects of climate change.”

What changed between then and now?
Nothing, really. Observers of international climate gatherings had warned that participants in the ten-day preparatory gathering in Bonn, Germany were unlikely to make significant headway on long-standing topics of contention, particularly those involving large financial obligations. The responses, however, were worse than anticipated.

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