Swiss and US stress need for ‘ambitious’ climate measures

Simonetta Sommaruga visiting a wind farm in Senegal in July Keystone / Anthony Anex

Environment Minister Simonetta Sommaruga and John Kerry, the US Special Presidential Envoy for Climate, have called for a rapid phase-out of coal energy and ambitious efforts by the G20 countries to reduce climate-damaging emissions.

This content was published on August 6, 2021 - 11:14

In a virtual exchange ahead of the COP26 climate conferenceExternal link in Glasgow in November, they agreed that robust rules were needed for the crediting of emission reductions achieved abroad, according to a statementExternal link issued by the environment ministry on Thursday.

Greenhouse gas emissions that one country reduces in another country should not be able to be counted in both countries, nor should the environment be burdened, they said.

Kerry emphasised that the G20 countries in particular should lead the way with ambitious emission reduction measures.

He informed Sommaruga that the US intended to increase significantly its financial support for climate policy in developing countries. Both countries agreed that financial support had to be strengthened, but that the donor base must be broadened for this to happen: wealthier emerging countries should also support the poorest countries in their efforts.

Kerry also called for the rapid phasing out of coal energy and a stop to the financing of this harmful form of energy. Switzerland said it, too, was working within the framework of international institutions to ensure that no more new coal-fired power plants were financed.

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