Posts tagged ‘Copenhagan’

China calls for more emissions cuts from U.S.

China’s top climate envoy called on President Barack Obama to increase a U.S. offer to cut greenhouse gases, and said it would discuss a 2050 emissions goal only if rich nations offered more cash and carbon cuts.

Xie Zhenhua said developed nations must commit to cuts of “at least 40 percent” by 2020 from 1990 levels. He said Beijing was aiming for a legally binding treaty from the December 7-18 talks, although hosts Denmark have said that will be impossible. A successful outcome from the summit largely depends on agreement between the United States and China, which together generate 40 percent of global carbon emissions.

But negotiations have been bogged down for months by rifts between developed and developing nations over who should cut emissions, by how much, and who should pay. “I do hope that President Obama can bring a concrete contribution to Copenhagen,” Xie said in a rare interview. Asked if he meant something more than Obama has proposed so far, a 3 percent cut from 1990 levels by 2020, Xie said: “Yes.” “The whole world is watching the United States, and as long as they take on a good leadership role, then I think that we can make a large step forward in combating climate change.”

The head of China’s delegation, who is deputy chairman of the powerful National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC), called for stronger action from rich nations a day after a senior member of his delegation slammed their existing commitments as unambitious and deceptive. Xie initially told Reuters rich countries should make emissions cuts of 25-40 percent versus 1990 levels by 2020, but clarified later that China was sticking to its past insistence of cuts of “at least 40 percent.”

For full story click HERE


December 10, 2009 at 10:18 AM Leave a comment

President Obama’s Going to Copenhagen with a Target Climate Change

President Barack Obama will go to Copenhagen next month to participate in a long-anticipated, high-stakes global climate summit, a White House official said. The president will attend the summit on Dec. 9 before heading to Oslo to accept the Nobel Peace Prize, the official told NBC News. Obama’s attendance had been in question until now.


The conference had originally been intended to produce a new global climate change treaty on limiting emissions of greenhouse gases that would replace the 1997 Kyoto Protocol. However, hopes for a legally binding agreement have dimmed lately, with leaders saying the summit is more likely to produce a template for future action to cut emissions blamed for global warming .

President Obama will attend the U.N. climate summit in Denmark, taking with him a target to reduce U.S. greenhouse gas emissions by 17 percent by 2020, the White House said Wednesday.

The pledge will not be part of a binding international treaty — the hopes for which have been dashed by the lack of a climate law coming out of Congress — but it will mimic the cuts passed by the House earlier this year. The Senate is still debating climate legislation.

“This provisional target” of 17 percent “is in line with current legislation in both chambers of Congress and demonstrates a significant contribution to a problem that the U.S. has neglected for too long,” the White House said in a statement.

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November 25, 2009 at 10:39 AM Leave a comment

Obama Says, Climate Deal Must Have Immediate Effect, Obama Says

U.S. President Barack Obama said on Tuesday next month’s climate talks in Copenhagen should cut a deal with “immediate operational effect,” even if its original aim of a legally binding pact is not achievable.

Obama was speaking after talks with Chinese President Hu Jintao in which he said the world’s top two greenhouse gas emitters had agreed to take “significant” action to mitigate their output of carbon dioxide.

U.S. President Barack Obama talks to China's President Hu Jintao at the Diaoyutai State Guest House in Beijing, November 16, 2009.

“Our aim (in Copenhagen) … is not a partial accord or a political declaration but rather an accord that covers all of the issues in the negotiations and one that has immediate operational effect,” Obama said.

Denmark, host of the December 7-18 climate talks, welcomed Obama’s comments and said it expected the United States and all developed nations to promise firm emissions cuts and new cash to help the poor cope with global warming, even if no treaty text could be agreed.

Danish Prime Minister Lars Lokke Rasmussen won backing on Sunday from Obama and other leaders at an Asia-Pacific summit for his scaled-down plan for a politically binding deal, with a legally binding one delayed until 2010.

“The American president endorsed our approach, implying that all developed countries will need to bring strong reduction targets to the negotiating table in Copenhagen,” he told about 40 environment ministers meeting in the Danish capital.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel was also keen that the momentum for a deal should be maintained.

“We will make very clear that we continue to support ambitious goals for Copenhagen,” she told reporters before a cabinet meeting.

“We must do everything to ensure that we move quickly to get a binding agreement. Even if this can’t be reached in Copenhagen, it can’t be pushed back forever.”

For Full Story click HERE

November 18, 2009 at 12:59 PM Leave a comment

Kerry’s green side takes center stage

John F. Kerry is known for his expertise on matters of war and foreign policy, and for his failed 2004 presidential bid.

But when he arrives in Copenhagen next month for international climate talks, the world will see a less familiar but perhaps more ardent side of the Massachusetts senator: the green Kerry.

After a quarter century in Washington, Kerry is emerging as a critical environmental dealmaker. He is leading the US Senate delegation that will try to broker a worldwide climate change agreement and is chief sponsor of a massive global warming bill in the Senate, a measure that was all but buried until Kerry forged an unlikely partnership with Republican Lindsey O. Graham of South Carolina last month.

Now, with virtually no chance of getting climate legislation through Congress before the end of the year, Kerry is still hoping to make enough progress toward a bipartisan deal to demonstrate to China, India, and other major greenhouse gas producers that the United States is serious about lowering emissions that are heating the Earth.

The challenge is enormous. Even if Kerry manages to find some consensus among Senate Democrats and Republicans in Washington before he goes, the task of setting binding emissions targets for industrialized and developing countries is unlikely to be achieved next month in Copenhagen. But the senator remains hopeful.

“What we have to do is listen to people, work with people, and fight very, very hard to get this job done,’’ Kerry said in a recent interview with the Globe. “It is not going to be easy, but every day we are moving the ball forward.’’

Though Kerry doesn’t have a strong track record as a conciliator in Congress, his biography can only help him, say his supporters. A bit of a wonk on climate science, he has been attending United Nations global warming summits since they began in Brazil in 1992. And he’s respected in diplomatic circles, as shown by his involvement in resolving the election crisis in Afghanistan last month.

“There is no one better positioned in the world than Senator Kerry’’ to get an international climate deal, said Robert Stavins, director of Harvard University’s Environmental Economics Program and an authority on international climate policy. “He has had an interest in these issues a long time. He is coauthor of the climate legislation. He is chair of the Foreign Relations Committee.’’

Full Story Here

November 13, 2009 at 2:12 PM Leave a comment

Denmark Invites 191 Leaders to U.N. Climate Summit

Denmark has formally invited the leaders of United Nations member countries to the U.N. conference in Copenhagen in December that will try to clinch a new global climate deal, the government said on Thursday.


The invitations are sent by letter from Prime Minister Lars Lokke Rasmussen to the heads of state and government of the other 191 U.N. member states.

The Copenhagen talks were originally meant for environment and climate ministers but the United Nations said last week that about 40 leaders have indicated plans to attend, including British Prime Minister Gordon Brown and leaders of nations in Africa, the Caribbean and Latin America.

November 12, 2009 at 10:23 AM 1 comment

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