The World Bank president appears to have heeded the growing calls for his resignation and made a U-turn after refusing to say the climate crisis was real.
During a New York Times At Tuesday’s event, David Malpass, a candidate for former President Donald Trump, fumed when asked if he accepted the scientific evidence that the worsening climate crisis was caused by humanity’s burning of fossil fuels.
He was asked directly about his views hours after Al Gore, the climate activist and former vice president, described Malpass as a “climate denier” during a panel. Gore called on President Joe Biden to remove Malpass from his post and criticized the bank for continuing to provide capital to fossil fuel companies to work in developing countries.
Malpass was repeatedly asked about Gore’s claim and whether he recognized the scientific consensus that fossil fuel use is “warming the planet rapidly and dangerously.”
He refused to give a direct answer to the question, instead telling the audience, “I’m not a scientist.”
On Thursday, Malpass sent a note to World Bank staff acknowledging the reality of the climate crisis, according to political.
“On climate, it is clear that greenhouse gas emissions from human activities are causing climate change, and that the sharp increase in the use of coal, diesel and heavy fuel oil in both advanced economies and developing countries developing is creating another wave of the climate crisis. . Anything seen in a different light is wrong and unfortunate,” Malpass’s note read, according to political.
the independent has contacted the World Bank for comment.
Malpass was appointed to the post of World Bank president after being nominated by Trump in 2019.
Climate activists and other political figures joined Gore’s call for the removal of the bank chief after his appearance.
Democratic Congresswoman Maxine Waters, chair of the House financial services committee, issued a statement calling Malpass’s refusal to accept the overwhelming scientific consensus on the climate crisis “appalling.”
“It is extremely worrying that the leader of the world’s leading development institution and largest source of climate finance is questioning the vast scientific evidence on which the Bank’s climate work is or should be based,” it said.
Bill McKibben, a longtime environmentalist and founder of the grassroots climate movement 350.org, used his weekly newsletter to call for the banker’s resignation.
“Some essential climate tasks are difficult and expensive and take years,” he wrote. And some couldn’t be easier. President Biden now needs to get rid of David Malpass as head of the World Bank.”
John Kerry, the US special envoy for climate change, who also appeared at the event earlier this week, was asked if the World Bank president had the confidence of the White House.
Kerry declined to comment, saying: “That is the president’s decision.”
However, he indicated that support for the bank’s position could be thin in a Biden administration.
Speaking about the multilateral development banks and their role in the climate crisis, Kerry said: “We need major reform, major restructuring.”
“It’s up to us to bring people together and get that reform done, and there’s a lot of discussion about whether we’re going to do that right now.”