Boris Johnson praises Joe Biden for ‘stepping up’ climate change pledge

Johnson said it was "fantastic to see the United States really stepping up and showing a lead." Pool Photo by Al Drago/UPI

Sept. 22 (UPI) — British Prime Minister Boris Johnson met with President Joe Biden at the White House Tuesday as the two countries committed to work together on climate change.

Earlier in the day, Biden agreed to double the United States’ climate finance pledge to help developing countries combat climate change to $11.4 billion by 2024.

“It’s fantastic to see the United States really stepping up and showing a lead,” Johnson said.

Speaking earlier alongside Vice President Kamala Harris, Johnson praised the Biden administration for its collaboration with Britain, including withdrawing troops from Afghanistan and recently agreeing to admit vaccinated foreign travelers with a negative COVID-19 test.

“I want to thank the U.S. government, your government, for many ways in which we are cooperating now at, I think, a higher and more intense level than any time I can remember,” he said.

Harris also expressed gratitude for the strong partnership between the two countries.

“The relationship between our two countries is a long and enduring one, one that we value based on shared priorities and based on, as we know, what is increasingly evident about partnerships and alliances around the world, we are indeed interconnected and interdependent in so many ways and in many ways more than ever before,” Harris said.

Johnson is also seeking a free trade deal with the United States, acknowledging the Trump administration for lifting a “curious ban on British beef” that was in place since an outbreak of mad cow disease and thanked the Biden administration for lifting its predecessor’s 25% tariff on Scotch whiskies.

Biden said the United States was also “working on” lifting a ban on British lamb.

The meeting also comes as the United States and British formed a trilateral security partnership with Australia, with its first goal to provide Australia with technology for a nuclear-powered submarine fleet.

Johnson on Tuesday said he believed the partnership has “great potential to benefit the whole of the world.”

The announcement of the deal led to a spat between the United States and France, as it resulted in the latter losing a multibillion-dollar deal to provide nuclear submarine technology to Australia.

Biden is expected to speak with French President Emmanuel Macron sometime this week.


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