Former U.S. President Obama says ‘act now’ to help island nations

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GLASGOW, Nov 8 (Reuters) – Former U.S. President Barack Obama called on the U.N. climate conference in Glasgow on Monday to address the risks that island nations face from rising sea levels.

Obama said their tales at the 2015 climate talks had been crucial to the resulting Paris Agreement, which commits countries to holding the rise in the average global temperature to “well below” 2 degrees Celsius above preindustrial levels.

“I have been shaped by my experience growing up in Hawaii,” Obama said, adding: “we have to act now to help with adaptation and resilience”.

Other speakers at the COP26 summit pressed Obama about the failure of the United States and other Western countries to meet pledges to provide $100 billion a year in climate finance.

“Among others, the USA is woefully short of paying its fair share of climate finance,” said Fiji’s Prime Minister Frank Bainimarama, adding: “Now we are most vulnerable are told to suck it up and wait.”

“Developed nations are failing us,” Bainimarama said.

Photo – Former US President Barack Obama (C) waves as he arrives with US special presidential envoy for climate John Kerry (L) to the COP26 UN Climate Change Conference in Glasgow, Britain, 08 November 2021. EPA-EFE/ROBERT PERRY

(Reporting by Valerie Volcovici; Editing by Alexander Smith)

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