Prime Minister of Antigua and Barbuda, Gaston Browne, has blasted “empty” and “grossly inadequate” climate pledges from wealthy developed nations.

Browne, who is the president of this decade’s UN summit for Small Island Developing States, says wealthy nations have failed to meet obligations to limit damage from carbon emissions.

Prime Minister Browne says it’s not sufficient for nations to simply make empty and grossly inadequate commitments under the Paris Agreement.

The 2015 treaty on climate change aims to limit emissions and prevent temperatures from rising more than 1.5 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels.

This threshold is seen as a tipping point for more severe and irreversible climate events. 

Prime Minister Browne has called for more climate financing, a global carbon tax on oil companies, an end to fossil fuel subsidies, and a faster transition to renewable energy sources. 

He’s urging rich nations to honour a pledge to send US $100 billion a year to poorer countries to help reduce emissions and mitigate extreme weather.