John Kerry hosts Major Economies Forum on climate crisis



The Major Economies Forum will focus on next steps following November’s UN climate summit in Glasgow, and chart a path forward for major countries to step up their climate ambitions and decrease emissions.

In addition to representatives from major economies — which produce the majority of global greenhouse gas emissions — other countries that have been most impacted by the climate crisis have been invited.

The event marks a chance for Kerry to get some face time with climate ministers, albeit virtual. Kerry’s typically busy travel schedule has been stymied by the rapid spread of the coronavirus, driven by the Omicron variant. Kerry’s last two in-person trips to Europe and Jordan took place in December.

Participants include ministers and other high-ranking officials representing more than two dozen countries and entities, including the United Nations, UK and the European Union. It is also expected to be attended by some of the world’s other top emitters, including Russia, China, Brazil and India.
Though some progress was made at the November summit, it was largely seen as a disappointment for failing to address fossil fuel emissions with the urgency scientists implore.
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The agreement forged between nations contained an unprecedented mention of fossil fuels and their role in exacerbating the climate crisis. However, objections from multiple countries watered down the language; for instance, India forced a last-minute text change that resulted in an agreement that coal should be phased “down,” rather than being phased “out.”

The US and China forged an agreement to curb China’s methane emissions and ramp up its climate ambition, but multiple summit participants told CNN that they believed Kerry’s team was being prevented from joining pledges to phase out coal because of the difficult politics surrounding President Joe Biden’s massive climate and economic bill.

The summit also ended without a clear resolution on the issue of loss and damage — whether wealthy nations should create a dedicated climate fund for smaller, developing nations that are bearing the brunt of climate change.


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