MARSHALL ISLANDS PRESIDENT DAVID KABUA: "The world simply cannot delay climate ambition any further."
Faced with what they see as an existential threat, leaders from low-lying and island nations implored rich countries at the United Nations General Assembly this week to act more forcefully against a warming planet.
Marshall Islands President David Kabua said his country was under threat from rising sea levels and that the 2015 Paris Agreement on climate change "must be delivered in action, not empty words."
KABUA: "Climate change remains the greatest threat to the security and well-being of our region, especially to low-lying atolls nations like my own. We simply have no higher ground to cede."
On Thursday, Guyana's president criticized large polluters for not delivering on promises to curb emissions, accusing them of "deception" and "failure."
GUYANA PRESIDENT IRFAAN ALI: "We hold out similar hope that the world's worst emitters of greenhouse gases that are affecting the welfare of all mankind will also come to the realization that, in the end, it will profit them little to emerge king over a world of dust."
Speaking at the United Nations Security Council on Thursday, U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken said the United States, under President Joe Biden, has prioritized addressing climate change.
BLINKEN: "The climate crisis isn't coming, it's already here. And clear patterns are emerging in its impact. The consequences are falling disproportionately on vulnerable and low-income populations."
Blinken also said agreeing that climate change belongs within the purview of the Security Council would send a clear message to the international community about the seriousness of the issue.
Russia's deputy U.N. Ambassador disagreed.
RUSSIAN DEPUTY U.N. AMBASSADOR, DMITRY POLYANSKIY: "We believe it is counterproductive to include the climate component in the mandates of peacekeeping and special political missions... peacekeepers do not have the necessary expertise nor the necessary tools to propose viable solutions for climate change."
Biden said earlier this week that he would work with Congress to double funds by 2024 to help developing nations deal with climate change.
And on Wednesday, Chinese President Xi Jinping pledged to stop building coal-fired power plants overseas.
World leaders will convene again to discuss combating climate change at the COP26 international climate summit in Glasgow on November 1.