- The Washington Times - Thursday, April 22, 2021

President Biden on Thursday said the U.S. plans to step up contributions intended to go toward developing countries to combat climate change.

Mr. Biden called a shared goal among developed countries to mobilize $100 billion per year to aid poorer countries “critical.”

“It’s an investment that’s going to pay significant dividends for all of us,” Mr. Biden said on the opening day of a virtual climate summit he’s hosting.

The president said that by 2024, the U.S. will double its commitment compared to where things were at the tail end of the Obama administration.

Under a 2009 agreement, wealthier countries are supposed to mobilize $100 billion annually by 2020 to help developing nations combat climate change, but the totals have fallen short of that benchmark.

In 2014, former President Obama had committed $3 billion to the Green Climate Fund. His administration ended up transferring $1 billion before Mr. Obama left office.

Mr. Biden had moved on his first day in office to rejoin the Paris Agreement of 2015, which reaffirmed and built on the $100 billion commitment. Former President Trump had announced in 2017 the U.S. would leave the deal.

The White House on Thursday also released an “international climate finance plan” outlining steps the U.S. is set to take in the near future to follow through on the commitment.

The plan includes new directives for departments and agencies like Treasury and the U.S. Agency for International Development to make sure the U.S. and others are following through on their emissions targets.

It also commits the Development Finance Corporation to increasing climate-related investments so that at least one-third of them are linked to “addressing the climate crisis” by 2023.

The DFC, a federal development bank, is also supposed to transition its portfolio to net-zero emissions by 2040.

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