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.
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 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.