'They talk but they don't act': Bangladesh PM denounces rich nations on climate

Published on Sep 24, 2022 11:49 AM IST

Sheikh Hasina On Climate Change: "I know the rich countries, they want to become more rich and rich. They don't bother for others," Bangladesh PM Sheikh Hasina said.

Sheikh Hasina On Climate Change: Prime Minister of Bangladesh Sheikh Hasina addresses the 77th session of the United Nations General Assembly.(AP)
Sheikh Hasina On Climate Change: Prime Minister of Bangladesh Sheikh Hasina addresses the 77th session of the United Nations General Assembly.(AP)
AFP |

A country of fertile, densely populated deltas, low-lying Bangladesh is among the most vulnerable nations in the world to climate change.

But the urgency of the situation is not being matched by actions of countries responsible for emissions, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina said.

"They don't act. They can talk but they don't act," she told AFP on a visit to New York for the United Nations General Assembly.

"The rich countries, the developed countries, this is their responsibility. They should come forward. But we are not getting that much response from them. That is the tragedy," she said.

"I know the rich countries, they want to become more rich and rich. They don't bother for others."

Bangladesh has produced a miniscule amount of the greenhouse gas emissions that have already contributed to the warming of the planet by an average of nearly 1.2 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels.

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The Paris accord called for $100 billion a year by 2020 from wealthy nations to help developing nations cope with climate change. That year, $83.3 billion was committed, including through private sources, according to Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development figures.

One key issue facing the next UN climate summit, to take place in Egypt in November, is whether wealthy nations also need to pay for losses and damages from climate change -- not just to pay for adaptation and mitigation.

"We want that fund to be raised. Unfortunately we didn't get a good response from the developed countries," Hasina said.

"Because they are the responsible ones for these damages, they should come forward," the 74-year-old added.

Wealthy nations have agreed only to discuss the loss and damage issue through 2024.

This year's General Assembly featured repeated calls for climate justice. The leader of tiny Vanuatu urged an international treaty against fossil fuels while the prime minister of Pakistan warned that floods that have swamped one-third of his country could happen elsewhere.

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