UN climate chief to global finance leaders: Hurry up

By Sara Schonhardt | 04/11/2024 06:54 AM EDT

The world “can’t afford a talkfest,” said the U.N.’s top climate official Wednesday as global financial leaders prepare to meet in Washington.

Simon Stiell.

Simon Stiell, executive secretary for the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, speaks Wednesday during an event in London. Frank Augstein/AP

Finance ministers and global lenders must move faster to get money flowing to address the climate crisis, the United Nations’ top climate official said Wednesday.

A “quantum leap” in climate finance is both essential for countries to set stronger climate targets “and entirely achievable” by shifting the trillions of dollars investors and governments put into polluting energy toward cleaner alternatives, said Simon Stiell, executive secretary for the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change, during in a speech in London.

His comments come just days before finance ministers and other leading financial figures gather for meetings of the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund in Washington.


Stiell was quick to put them on notice, saying the world “can’t afford a talkfest” without clear steps forward.