The U.N.’s environment chief said Tuesday he is optimistic that the climate change talks beginning in Copenhagen next week will reach a deal setting firm targets to cut carbon emissions.
Recent offers by the United States and China appear modest compared with European Union proposals and scientists’ demands, but probably represent only first offers, said Achim Steiner, director of the U.N. Environment Program.
China should provide details on how it will implement its greenhouse gas limits and offer further proposals commensurate with its status as the world’s largest emitter, European leaders said Tuesday.
China promised Thursday to nearly halve the ratio of pollution to GDP over the next decade — a major voluntary step that came a day after President Barack Obama promised the U.S. would lay out plans at this month’s global warming conference in Copenhagen to substantially cut its own greenhouse gas emissions.
Recent pledges by the United States and China to cut carbon emissions are now propelling India to make its own commitment to slow greenhouse gas emissions and go into the upcoming Copenhagen climate summit with a firm proposal on reductions.
The move marks a significant shift for India, which has previously said more established, wealthier nations should bear the brunt of carbon cuts rather than emerging nations whose economies are less developed.
Senator John F. Kerry today urged the State Department to consider increasing the US financial commitment to support international climate change priorities as officials prepare for the Copenhagen summit starting next week. President Obama’s 2009-10 budget includes about $1.2 billion, but Kerry wrote to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton that $3 billion in 2010-11 is needed.
are confused—and said their skepticism should not derail efforts to strike a climate deal in Denmark.
Just in time for the opening of the United National Climate Change conference in Copenhagen next week, the London-based medical journal The Lancet has published the findings of a number of studies that examine the links between climate change and public health.