Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Concerted efforts needed to aid global fight against climate change

Concerted efforts needed to aid global fight against climate change

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
Greenpeace activists carry a giant balloon representing planet Earth which is connected to an infusion in Zagreb, Croatia, last year. AFP

Concerted efforts needed to aid global fight against climate change

US President Joe Biden certainly deserves praise for rejoining the Paris Agreement on climate change – which his predecessor withdrew from – immediately after being inaugurated as the leader of the US.

Now he is reportedly going to unveil executive orders on January 27 to combat climate change at home and elevate the issue as a national security priority in moves described as “the vision of the future” by Gina McCarthy, the White House’s national climate adviser.

Although the details have not been released, the executive orders are expected to roll back the previous administration’s policies that aimed to maximise the US output and exports of oil, gas and coal. Given that the US is the largest producer of greenhouse gases on a per capita basis, and that the former US administration under Donald Trump rolled back more than 100 regulations on climate and the environment, which greatly worsened carbon pollution, Biden’s move will significantly benefit the global fight against climate change.

It is one of the hardest tasks that Biden faces to right all the climate wrongs, and he will need to put in place the necessary personnel, budgets and policies as quickly as possible.

Thus it is a little perplexing that John Kerry, Biden’s special climate envoy, while claiming that the US had returned to the Paris Agreement with humility, told foreign ministers in Europe on January 22 that the US administration has begun to “apply diplomatic pressure” on countries to work harder to curb emissions, especially China, whose ambitious plan to become “carbon neutral” before 2060, he called “not good enough”.

Fortunately, China does not need to rely on the US to approve its green credentials. The progress it is making to help keep the increase in the global average temperature to well below 2 degree Celsius above pre-industrial levels has been acknowledged around the world. Inger Anderson, executive director of the UN Environment Programme, called the pledge “a big step forward for China and for the world”.

Climate change poses a huge challenge to all. China, as the world’s largest investor, producer and consumer of renewable energy, has already set a good example by delivering on its previous climate pledges.

World leaders, who met at the two-day virtual Climate Adaptation Summit on January 25 to find ways to address climate challenge, need to put aside their differences so they can agree on an action agenda and concrete proposals to build a climate-resilient planet.



  • With herd immunity likely in 2022, is Cambodia ready to reopen for tourism?

    The government aims to inoculate 80 per cent of the target population by June next year, giving it a head start among regional peers to reboot the sector but first, it has to do a few things to up its game A sign on a glass

  • Quarantine still a must for all arrivals, in next Covid chapter

    Since early May, an average of five to 10 Cambodian people have died from Covid-19 a day with many others testing positive amid the ongoing community outbreak. At the same time, however, hundreds of patients also recovered a day. The first Covid-19 case in Cambodia was

  • US wants 'full access' to Ream Naval Base

    On June 11, the US embassy's Defense Attaché Colonel Marcus M Ferrara visited Ream Nava Base in coordination with Cambodian officials following the recent approval of Prime minister Hun Sen to allay the concerns on Chinese military presence at the base as raised by US Deputy

  • First commercial gold mine online

    Australian miner Renaissance Minerals (Cambodia) Ltd on June 21 began the commercial operation of its $120 million Okvau Gold Project in the northeastern province of Mondulkiri, becoming the Kingdom’s first gold producer. Located in the Okvau area in southwestern Mondulkiri province’s Keo Seima district, the

  • Jab drive heading to 5 provinces

    The government is set to vaccinate more than 1.2 million people in five provinces after finishing with Phnom Penh and neighbouring Kandal in an ongoing campaign administered by the ministries of Health and National Defence. The five provinces are Preah Sihanouk, Kampong Speu, Takeo, Kampong Cham

  • New immigration bill targets illegal foreigners in Kingdom

    General Department of Immigration (GDI) officials are discussing revisions to the new draft law on immigration to prevent foreigners from entering Cambodia illegally and to supervise those living in the Kingdom more effectively. The revisions draw wide support among civil society organisations. GDI director-general Kirth