As they closed the Rome summit, leaders of the largest economies in the world agreed to end funding coal-fired power stations in poor countries. They also made vague promises to achieve carbon neutrality by mid-century.

The Group of 20 summit was praised by the French President Emmanuel Macron and Mario Draghi, the Italian Prime Minister. However, it disappointed Britain’s leader and chief of the U.N. The two-week conference will be held in Glasgow, the United Kingdom. It had hoped for greater goals from Rome.

Boris Johnson, the British Prime Minister, called the G-20’s commitments “drops in an ocean rapidly warming.” Antonio Guterres, U.N Secretary-General, agreed that the result was inadequate.

Guterres tweeted, “While I appreciate the #G20’s recommitment towards global solutions, but I leave Rome without my hopes fulfilled — but at least they’re not buried,” “Onwards, #COP26 in Glasgow.”

G-20 countries account for more than three quarters of all world’s greenhouse gas emissions. Britain had hoped for a “G-20 bounce”, going into the Glasgow COP26 meeting. Scientists and environmentalists have called the U.N. conference the “last best hope” to secure commitments to reduce global temperature rise to 1.5 degrees Celsius (2.7 degree Fahrenheit) above pre-industrial levels.

Summit exposed the divisions between the West, which polluted the planet most in the past but are now seeing their emissions decline, and emerging economies led China, whose emissions are increasing as they grow.

Britain demanded a commitment to climate neutrality, or net-zero emission, which means a balance between the greenhouse gases added and removed from our atmosphere by 2050.

The United States and European Union have both set 2050 as their deadline to reach net-zero emission. China, Russia, and Saudi Arabia, however, are setting 2060 as their respective deadlines. These three leaders didn’t travel to Rome to attend the summit.

The G-20 leaders reached a compromise to reach climate neutrality “by or about mid-century,” and not in a single year.

Joe Biden, the U.S. president, described it as “disappointing” that G-20 members Russia (and China) didn’t make commitments to address climate change before the U.N. climate conference.

Xi Jinping and Vladimir Putin, the Russian President, are not expected to attend the conference. However they will be sending high-ranking officials to the international COP26 negotiations.

“The disappointment stems from the fact that Russia…and China basically did not show up in terms o any commitments to climate change. There’s a reason people should be disappointed,” Biden stated, adding that he found the experience disappointing.

Biden’s comments were in response to a reporter asking about the modest promises made at the G-20 summit.

The president stated that “We made commitments here across the board in regards to what we’re going bring to (COP26)”. “The proof of the pudding will be in what you eat,” is an old trade saying.

Sergey Lavrov, Russia’s Foreign Minister, reacted to the West’s deadline earlier in the day.

Lavrov, at a news conference, asked Lavrov: “Why do your believe 2050 to be some magical figure?” “If it’s an ambition of European Union, it’s the right of other nations No one has proved to us or anyone else that 2050 must be subscribed to.”

Italy’s Draghi stated that the G-20 declaration on climate went further than any previous one. He pointed out that the declaration referred to keeping the 1.5 degree global warming target within reach. Science shows that this will be difficult to achieve unless the world drastically reduces its fossil fuel emissions.

Draghi stated to reporters, “We changed the goalposts.”

Justin Trudeau, the Canadian Premier, stated that G-20 leaders being able to come together was a success in light of the coronavirus pandemic.

Trudeau stated, “It is very encouraging that we have laid out the table and identified the sharp edges and what work we will have to do at the COP… It’s a positive step.”

The G-20 was also faced with the difficult task of deciding on the future of coal as a major source of greenhouse gas emissions.

Leaders agreed at the Rome summit to “put an end the provision of international financial finance for new unabated coal power generation overseas by the end 2021.” This refers to financial support to build coal plants abroad.

Western countries have begun to move away from this financing, and major Asian economies are following their lead: The Chinese President Xi Jinping declared at the U.N. General Assembly last week that Beijing would cease funding such projects. Japan and South Korea had made similar commitments earlier this year.

China has not yet set an end date to build coal plants at its own homes. China still relies on coal for its primary source of power generation. India and China have rejected proposals to make a G-20 declaration phasing out their domestic coal consumption.

Britain was disappointed by the failure of G-20 members to establish a goal for ending domestic coal use. Johnson’s spokesperson Max Blain said that the G-20 communique was not meant to be the main lever to secure climate change commitments. He noted that those would be discussed at the Glasgow summit.

John Kirton, Director of the G-20 Research Group at University of Toronto, stated that the leaders took only small steps in the agreement and did not do much new.

He referred to the agreement to “recall” and “reaffirm” their long-overdue commitment of $100 billion in aid to poorer nations and to “stress that it is important to meet that goal fully as quickly as possible, rather than stating that they are ready to pay the full amount.

The agreement to stop international coal financing is “the one thing that’s concrete and real.” Kirton stated that this one matters.

As the G-20 ended, Greta Thunberg, a youth climate activist, and Vanessa Nakate wrote an open letter to media. They stressed three basic aspects of climate crisis, which are often downplayed. That time is running out; that any solution must give justice to those most affected and that big polluters often conceal their true emissions behind incomplete statistics.

The climate crisis will only get worse. It is possible to avoid the worst, and we can still turn it around. They wrote this just weeks after Thunberg had shamed global leaders over their “blahblahblahblah” rhetoric at a youth climate summit.

Jennifer Morgan, Greenpeace’s Executive Director, said that the G-20 had failed to provide the leadership needed. She told The Associated Press that she believed the G-20 was a “betrayal” to young people all over the globe on Sunday.

Apart from the climate issues, leaders agreed to a landmark agreement that would allow countries to establish a global minimum corporate income tax of 15%. The global minimum is designed to deter multinational corporations from shifting their profits to low-tax countries where they may not do much actual business.

They also stated that they would continue to work on a French initiative to allow wealthier countries to channel $100 billion in financial assistance to Africa’s needier countries. This was in the form special drawing rights, a foreign exchange instrument used to finance imports. It is also received by advanced nations.

Leaders stated that they are “working on actionable alternatives” and that the $100 billion figure is a “total worldwide ambition” rather than an absolute commitment. Individual countries have already redirected $45 billion on a voluntary basis.

This commitment is a reflection of concern about the diverging recovery from post-pandemic. Wealthy countries are recovering faster because they have received more vaccinations and stimulus spending.