House Democrats Pressure Biden Admin To Embrace Climate Reparations

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Jack McEvoy Energy & Environment Reporter
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Democratic Minnesota Rep. Ilhan Omar and 12 other House Democrats are calling on presidential climate envoy John Kerry to help establish a framework that would have wealthy nations pay poorer nations to repair damages caused by carbon emissions.

Omar and the other lawmakers, which included Democratic New York Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and House Natural Resources Committee Chair Raúl Grijalva, told the Biden administration to support the United Nations’ “loss and damage” financing framework, according to a letter first acquired by The Washington Post. Meanwhile, at the United Nations COP27 climate change conference in Egypt, the U.S. and wealthy European nations have indicated that they will not sign an agreement that would force them to pay climate reparations, CNN reported. (RELATED: Biden To Hand Out Billions To Stop Developing Country From Using Coal)

“We have both a moral and strategic responsibility to provide comprehensive support for countries facing climate disaster, including debt forgiveness and reparations,” the Democrats wrote.

The Democrats also argued that intermittent humanitarian assistance and financing would not be enough to help countries that are facing “billions of dollars in loss and damage needs,” according to the letter. The lawmakers wrote that climate reparations must also be paid to countries in addition to climate financing that is already provided to help nations reduce emissions.

SHARM EL SHEIKH, EGYPT – Protesters demonstrate over climate justice, loss and damage, fossil fuels, human rights, exploitation by rich countries of poor countries and other climate related issues during the UNFCCC COP27 climate conference on November 12, 2022 in Sharm El Sheikh, Egypt. (Photo by Sean Gallup/Getty Images)

Although Kerry previously said that the U.S. would “not obstruct” international talks concerning financing for climate reparations, he also stated on Saturday that wealthy countries are unlikely to support a “loss and damage” fund even though climate activists and nations such as Barbados have demanded climate funding, according to the Post.

“It’s a well-known fact that the United States and many other countries will not establish … some sort of legal structure that is tied to compensation or liability,” Kerry said at COP27 on Saturday, according to the Post. “That’s just not happening.”

At the G20 summit in Indonesia, President Joe Biden unveiled a plan to give Indonesia $20 billion to phase out coal and embrace green energy technologies.

Omar’s office and the White House did not immediately respond to the Daily Caller News Foundation’s request for comment.

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