The Latest: Johnson welcomes US commitment on emissions

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Latest on President Joe Biden’s global climate summit (all times local):

9:50 a.m.

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson has welcomed the United States’ new commitment to halve emissions as a “game-changing” announcement. Johnson will be hosting the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Glasgow later this year.

As host of COP-26, Johnson said Thursday at President Joe Biden’s climate summit he wanted to see “similar ambitions” around the world.

Johnson says, “I think we can do it. To do it we need scientists in all of our countries to work together to produce the technological solutions that humanity is going to need.”

He says the developed world will have to find more resources to support developing countries’ move to a greener future. He says, “It’s going to mean the richest nations coming together and exceeding the $100 billion commitment they already made in 2009.”

Johnson stresses the economic dividend that could emerge from efforts to tackle climate change.



Saying the United States and other big economies “have to get this done,” President Joe Biden opened a global climate summit aimed at getting world leaders to dig deeper on emissions cuts.

Read more:

What to Watch: In Biden climate show, look for cajoling, conflict, pathos



9:30 a.m.

South Korean President Moon Jae-in says his country will no longer finance the construction of coal power plants in other nations as he promises stronger contributions to international efforts to curb global warming.

In a virtual climate summit convened by President Joe Biden on Thursday, Moon said his country will provide a more ambitious target for reducing carbon emissions by the end of the year. South Korea in December had announced a 2030 target to cut its carbon emissions by 24.4% from the country’s 2017 level.

South Korea has faced international criticism for its continued investment in coal plants in other countries even as it pushes to phase out coal power at home.

Moon’s office says his pledge doesn’t affect South Korea’s participation in ongoing projects to build two new coal plants in Indonesia and another one in Vietnam.


9:20 a.m.

World leaders including China’s President Xi Jinping, India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Russia’s President Vladimir Putin and Germany’s Chancellor Angela Merkel are addressing a virtual global summit on climate change hosted by U.S. President Joe Biden.

Speaking from their home countries, the world leaders pledge action to lower carbon emissions, although they differ on details.

Japan’s Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga emphasized the global nature of the event, saying, “Good morning, good afternoon and good evening, everyone.” He was speaking at nearly 10 p.m. in Japan and in the morning on the U.S. East Coast.

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson says the effort “is not bunny hugging” but is about growth and jobs — and the survival of the planet.

Merkel calls the battle against climate change “a huge task.”

Putin’s remarks came after French President Emmanuel Macron began but had technical difficulties. Putin boasted that his country has significantly reduced its carbon emissions and will met an ambitious goal for 2050. Then Macron spoke again.


9:10 a.m.

India’s prime minister says he and U.S. President Joe Biden are launching an Indo-U.S. climate and clean energy agenda for 2030 partnership that will mobilize investments, demonstrate clean technology and enable green collaboration.

Narendra Modi told world leaders at a virtual summit called by Biden on Thursday that India is doing its part and its renewable energy target of 450 gigawatts by 2030 shows its commitment to clean energy. India also has taken several bold steps in promoting clean energy, energy efficiency, afforestation and biodiversity.

Modi says India has taken the lead in multilateral initiatives, such as the International Solar Alliance and the coalition of disaster resilient infrastructure.

Modi says India’s per capita carbon footprint was 60% lower than the global average because of its lifestyle, which is still rooted in sustainable traditional practices.


8:45 a.m.

China’s President Xi Jinping reiterates his country’s pledge to peak carbon emissions before 2030 and achieve carbon neutrality before 2060.

Xi spoke at the global climate summit hosted by the United States on Thursday. He says, “We must be committed to green development. To improve the environment is to boost productivity.”

Xi says developed countries, responsible for greater historical carbon emissions, should bear more responsibility for making changes at home and helping developing countries finance their transition to low-carbon economies.

He says, “We must be committed to the principle to common but differentiated responsibilities.”

Xi emphasizes that China is aiming to move from peak carbon to net zero in a short time period –- just 30 years, or the span of one generation.


8:35 a.m.

United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres says the world is “at the verge of the abyss” because of climate change and must take aggressive steps to avoid catastrophe.

Speaking at a global virtual summit on climate change Thursday, Guterres called for world leaders to build a global coalition for net-zero carbon emissions by 2050 — “every country, every region, every city, every company and every industry.″

Guterres says the next decade must be one of transformation, with major polluters such as the United States and other advanced countries submitting detailed, ambitious plans to slow climate change.

Guterres says countries around the world must put a price on carbon, end subsidies for fossil fuels, ramp up investments in renewable energy and green infrastructure and stop the financing of coal and the building of new coal power plants.

He calls for advanced countries to phase out coal by 2030, with other countries phasing it out by 2040.


8:30 a.m.

The U.S. climate summit has started with an audio glitch, audio glitch.

For the first few minutes, during nearly all of Vice President Kamala Harris’ introduction of President Joe Biden, praising his history of climate advocacy, every word echoed. Echoed.

Then when Biden came on, the video and the audio were out of sync, while he urged the world “to move now” on what he called “the climate crisis.”

Biden said Thursday, “The cost of inaction keeps mounting. The United States isn’t waiting.”

Harris ticked off recent climate disasters including hurricanes hitting Central America during a year of record Atlantic storms.

United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres calls the problem “an existential threat” and says the world is “on red alert.”

Biden says this is the “decisive decade.” He says, “This is the decade we must make decisions that will avoid the worst consequences of the climate crisis.”

Biden says the richest economies “have to step up.”


8 a.m.

The Biden administration has opened a global climate summit including 40 world leaders.

President Joe Biden is pledging to cut at least in half the climate-wrecking coal and petroleum fumes that the U.S. pumps out. That’s a commitment Biden hopes will spur China and other big polluters to speed up efforts of their own.

Former Vice President Al Gore praised the pledge on Thursday, saying, “Today President Biden showed that his administration is up to the task of tackling climate change.”

Japan also announced a new target, pledging to cut its emissions 46% below 2013 levels by 2030.

The two-day summit will include China’s Xi Jinping, Russia’s Vladimir Putin and the pope and will be livestreamed.