China says "not optimistic" about climate talks

BEIJING Mon Nov 28, 2011 7:16am EST

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BEIJING (Reuters) - China's chief negotiator for climate change talks is "not very optimistic" about the results of global climate talks in Durban, state radio reported on Monday.

Countries will make a last ditch effort to save a dying Kyoto Protocol at global climate talks starting on Monday aimed at cutting the greenhouse gas emissions blamed by scientists for rising sea levels, intense storms and crop failures.

Major parties have been at loggerheads for years about the Kyoto Protocol, which was adopted in 1997 and entered into force in 2005.

The agreement commits most developed states to binding emissions targets. The talks are the last chance to set another round of targets before the first commitment period ends in 2012.

"Now the prospects are not very optimistic," Chinese negotiator Su Wei told state radio, without elaborating. "However, at least in developed countries, the European Union has expressed willingness to consider the second commitment period of the Kyoto Protocol."

The report said that there were widespread differences among the parties.

Envoys said there may be a political deal struck with a new set of binding targets, but only the European Union, New Zealand, Australia, Norway and Switzerland are likely to sign up at best.

Any accord depends on China and the United States, the world's top emitters, agreeing binding action under a wider deal by 2015, something both have resisted for years.

China, the world's top carbon emitter, is unwilling to make any commitments until Washington does while Russia, Japan and Canada say they will not sign up to a second commitment period unless the biggest emitters do too.

(Reporting by Wan Xu and Sui-Lee Wee; Editing by Sugita Katyal)

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Comments (3)
mgunn wrote:
This article (and many like it) need to clarify their biased phrase of what top CO2 emitter is. The instantaneous emission only at this moment in time is not the best measure.

The largest man-made component of atmospheric CO2 is still the US… followed by Europe. See graph below (which doesn’t combine European countries but if it did it would approach the United States.)

And this doesn’t even take into account PER CAPITA historical emissions… which would make our responsibility even more pathetic.

And these higher per capita emissions persist to this day with Europeans and Americans emitting far more than BIC countries.

So much for democracy, and Abe Lincoln, and how everyone is created equal, huh?

And finally to make it supremely pathetic… a large portion of CO2 production by BIC countries is for export for OUR consumption. So we are effectively benefiting from the product and passing the blame.

The REAL measure of CO2 responsibility is CONSUMPTION and focusing on this that will be the equitable way of addressing this issue, with the US and Europe being by far the largest consumers.

Nov 28, 2011 9:51am EST  --  Report as abuse
If China won’t sign, it doesn’t matter what anyone else does.

Nov 28, 2011 10:08am EST  --  Report as abuse
The lack of cooperation between all countries is why the human race is inevitably doomed. We’ll sit and bicker until we are basically forced into doing something and by then, it may be too late. For an apparently intelligent race, we sure are stupid.

Nov 28, 2011 11:09am EST  --  Report as abuse
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