Mr Blinken said the United States will “lead by example” by investing heavily in clean energy. And he added some warnings to the nations he needs as climate partners. He did not name Brazil, but he warned that the destruction of the rainforest would not be tolerated. And in an apparent message to China, he said climate cooperation was not a “chip” countries could use to avoid scrutiny of “bad behavior” regarding human rights and other questions.
“Climate is not a collectible card, it’s the future,” said Blinken.
Many diplomats this time said they were clearer about the ability of the United States to engage on climate change. But they were nonetheless inclined to give the Biden administration the benefit of the doubt.
“I think that on climate change, US policy is seen as a pendulum,” Malik Amin Aslam, Pakistani Prime Minister’s climate change adviser, said in an interview. Vulnerable countries are simply “happy that the Biden administration has put the pendulum in the right direction,” he added.
Rondald J. Jumeau, Seychelles’ former ambassador to the United Nations and longtime climate change negotiator, said he viewed the Biden administration’s announcements with “moderate excitement” and hoped the United States could follow through, not just on emission reductions. but also finance small island nations and other vulnerable countries.
In addition to rolling back climate regulations, Mr. Trump halted payments to the Green Climate Fund to help poorer countries switch to clean energy and adapt to the consequences of climate change. Mr Biden has pledged to restore funding, starting with $ 1.2 billion this year, subject to congressional approval.
“I think we all know the American political system now,” Jumeau said. “If we haven’t learned during the Trump years, we’ll never learn how dysfunctional he is.”
Adam S. Posen, president of the Peterson Institute for International Economics, said America’s inconstancy on the world stage began long before Mr. Trump. From climate change to international development to trade laws, he said, allies have learned to live with the shifting priorities of Republicans and Democratic administrations, with Congress remaining largely unable to push through major policy in the country. law.