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Biden and world leaders at a climate change summit

3 May 2021

The US President convened 40 world leaders for a summit on combating climate change: the decisive decade has begun, there is no turning back. Transforming economies towards ecological transition is the way to save our Planet.

On World Earth Day 2021, the world reflected on the future of the planet.

US President Joe Biden brought together forty world leaders in a virtual conference on combating the climate emergency. This meeting, which was not on the official calendar of international relations, was intended to signal a decisive change of direction by the United States in contrast to the indifference of its predecessor.

“This is the decisive decade,” Biden declared,  promising to cut US carbon emissions by 50% by the end of 2030 and calling on his colleagues around the world to accelerate their plans for reducing greenhouse-gas emissions. All leaders, including Russia and China, were supportive of Biden’s exhortation that the transition to sustainability – this huge collective financial, economic and social effort – should not be seen as a sacrifice, but as an engine for growth and prosperity.

The day before, Europe had announced that EU governments and the European Parliament had reached an agreement that will enact into law the continent’s commitments to a 55% cut in CO2 emissions by 2030 and climate neutrality by 2050. “A political commitment has become a legal commitment,” commented Ursula von der Leyen, explaining that Europe is the first continent to build a green market.

Pope Francis, speaking at the summit among world leaders, urged them to act with courage to invent new paths, to work with justice and always to tell the truth, because “God always forgives, man sometimes, but nature never”.

Young activist Greta Thunberg also warned: “Do the right thing; we young people will judge you”.

“We are confident that we will win this battle together,” Prime Minister Mario Draghi began his speech, welcoming the US change of direction.  For our Prime Minister, the summit was a key opportunity to catalyse efforts ahead of Cop 26 and the G20 meeting, this year under Italian presidency: “We must not lose sight of the fight against climate change while we fight against the pandemic. We can transform our economies to build a greener and more inclusive model“.

In the Recovery Plan, which will be presented in Parliament in a few days and will then reach the European Commission by 30 April, an entire chapter will be devoted to ecological transition. Mario Draghi has called it a “green revolution”.

“Italy is beautiful but very fragile,” Mario Draghi continued, “The battle for the climate is also a battle to protect its history and landscape.”

According to the Copernicus report, 2020 will be the hottest year ever recorded and in 2021 carbon dioxide emissions, which slowed down last year thanks to lockdowns, will increase by 1.5 billion tonnes.

FAI is increasingly aware that everyone, from institutions to the general public, must do their bit to reduce CO2 emissions into the atmosphere. For this reason, the Trust has been active for years with a programme of energy efficiency and attention to its own consumption aimed at reducing its emissions.

22 April 2021 was the day of promises.

We really hope that this union of intentions of the world’s great leaders will be followed up in future international meetings, and we invite governments to act courageously, now, because 2030 is tomorrow.

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