Civil society groups including the Climate Action Network International, International Policy Coordinator Réseau Action Climat France, 350.org, Policy Director, Climate and Energy Program, Union of Concerned Scientists among others have reacted to the G20 summit declaration that ended in New Delhi, India at the weekend.
Tasneem Essop, Executive Director, Climate Action Network International said: “The G20 countries, who together account for over 80% of global emissions, have once again shown that they are not serious about addressing the climate emergency. They have failed to address the root cause of the climate crisis – fossil fuels, which does not even get a mention in the declaration. This shows dangerous backsliding despite the recent devastating climate impacts experienced across the world and the latest UN assessment showing a glaring gap in the delivery of the Paris Agreement goals”.
“Rich nations in particular within the group should be leading by example and setting a high bar ahead of COP28. The Global Fight to End Fossil Fuels mobilisations taking place across the globe next weekend, will shine a spotlight on this shameful lack of leadership. It is time for people to mobilise and hold these leaders to account.”
Harjeet Singh, Head of Global Political Strategy, Climate Action Network International: “While the G20’s commitment to renewable energy targets is commendable, it sidesteps the root cause—our global dependency on fossil fuels. As the climate crisis looms like a dark cloud over humanity, the world cries out for a just transition away from fossil fuels. Rich nations within this group of leading economies have not only failed to curb their own emissions but have also fallen short in financially aiding developing countries with their green initiatives. It’s high time for these nations to lead by example, turn their promises into actions, and help forge a greener, more equitable future for all.”
Sanjay Vashist, Director, Climate Action Network South Asia : In a clear victory for fossil fuel producing nations, the New Delhi Leader’s Summit Declaration adopted by G20 nations fails to mention timelines for the phase out of fossil fuels even as it refers to ‘pursuing and encouraging efforts to triple renewable energy capacity through existing targets and policies’ and reaffirms its ‘commitment to tackle climate change by strengthening the full and effective implementation of the Paris Agreement.’ Unfortunately the New Delhi Declaration, despite its good intentions, fails to send a strong signal to countries to take transformative action and once again global ambition and implementation to address climate change remains insufficient.
Ashfaq Khalfan, Oxfam Climate Change G20 spokesperson:“G20 leaders leave the Summit with no change to their plans of maintaining their emissions to levels in 2030 at least double what they should be. They aspire to triple renewable energy capacity but do not want to go beyond existing targets and policies! The richer G20 countries had a choice. On the one hand, climate catastrophe. On the other, to drastically reduce their emissions and provide sufficient levels of climate finance to the Global South. They leave New Delhi having chosen catastrophe. G20 members could raise $2.1 trillion dollars annually through higher taxes on the mega-wealthy and taxes on the huge windfall profits in the fossil fuel, food and other sectors.”
Andreas Sieber, 350.org Associate Director of Policy and Campaigns: “The G20’s commitment to triple renewable energy is a historic step, a glimmer of hope in our battle against climate chaos. Tripling renewable energy by 2030 may propel us back on a path to keep global heating to 1.5C. But let’s not celebrate just yet. We must hold them accountable, demand they phase out fossil fuels, and lead with urgency. In particular the rich nations must bear the weight of responsibility and provide finance to achieve the commitment to triple renewable energy by 2030.”
Gaïa Febvre, International Policy Coordinator Réseau Action Climat France: “Promoting the phase-in of renewable energy and setting targets is a positive step, but without a clear, comprehensive, and irreversible phase-out plan for fossil fuels, it falls short of safeguarding our planet for current and future generations. To truly protect our environment, we must prioritize the adoption of renewables with a clear plan but also the permanent cessation of fossil fuel reliance, fast, fair, and forever.”
Dr Stephan Singer, Climate Science and Energy Policy Advisor CAN International: “The commitments to clean renewable energy and energy efficiency are riddled with loopholes. Tripling renewable energy capacity by 2030 is a huge step forward if done properly. But what beyond 2030? It is unclear what the baselines are, unclear what the specific process is to establish national targets of countries to achieve this global goal and unclear how any transparent monitoring, review and assessment of these targets could be conducted and by whom. It is fully unclear as to how about USD 1 trillion annual public financial support by rich OECD nations, necessary for a 1.5 C pathway for the planet, could be generated for poor developing countries to transition to clean energy. G20 sharpened its mouth but forgot to whistle.”
Rachel Cleetus, Policy Director, Climate and Energy Program, Union of Concerned Scientists: “G20 leaders acknowledged a gap in climate action to date and the harsh toll of worsening climate impacts around the world. While they’ve signaled support for strong global renewable energy and energy efficiency goals, the weak language in the final outcome doesn’t give assurance that these goals will be met. In the context of the U.N. Global Stocktake report just released, which shows countries are falling well short of meeting global climate goals, this G20 outcome is woefully inadequate. Major emitting nations have a responsibility to clearly and firmly commit to a rapid scale-up of clean energy investments and a sharp curtailment of fossil fuels to ensure deep cuts in heat-trapping emissions by 2030 aligned with the latest science. This must also be accompanied by a significant increase in finance from richer nations, including the United States, to help low- and middle-income countries make this transition in an equitable way.”
Glen Klatovsky, CEO, Climate Action Network Australia: “The G20 has allowed a nation like Australia to continue to avoid international scrutiny for our role in fossil fuel extraction. Australia continues to approve new coal mines, we are one of the two biggest exporters of coal and LNG and we are among the biggest per capita emitters on earth. Every leader at the G20 knows we urgently need to end fossil fuels, and yet there is no demand for action in the Leaders statement today. The G20 leaders should be demanding that Australia make the rapid transition now for the sake of all of us.”