US Tangles With the World Over Climate Change at G20
Negotiations over the wording of the final communiqué from the G20 meeting of the world’s wealthiest nations carried on late into Saturday morning. The sticking point? Disagreements over the US’s preferred phrasing for the group’s position on climate change and renewable energy. Bafflingly, the US wanted to state that it will help other nations with access to fossil fuels.
According to multiple reports, negotiations hit a wall when the US insisted on a line that reads, “USA will endeavor to work closely with other partners to help their access to and use of fossil fuels.” The final language that was agreed upon reads, “The United States of America states it will endeavour to work closely with other countries to help them access and use fossil fuels more cleanly and efficiently and help deploy renewable and other clean energy sources, given the importance of energy access and security in their nationally-determined contributions.” The language frames America’s dedication to fossil fuels in a way that implies that its focus will be on innovation while still satisfying the oil-lust of US officials like the EPA’s Scott Pruitt. A European official close to the talks tells Buzzfeed, “The Americans will be happier with the wording than we are.”