Archive for the ‘emissions’ Category

Cha-Ching: China Will Do More For Global Warming if U.S. Pay$ More

December 12, 2008

China‘s top negotiator at the UN climate talks welcomed the climate pact adopted by EU leaders on Friday as a “positive step,” but criticised carbon reduction goals set by US president-elect Barack Obama as too weak.

In an interview with AFP, Su Wei said the deal struck at the European Union‘s summit in Brussels as “a positive step.”

by Marlowe Hood

Passers-by look at the picture of the earth at the "Technologies ... 
Passers-by look at the picture of the earth at the “Technologies for Climate Protection” exibition during the UN Climate Change Conference in Poznan, on December 7, 2008. China’s top negotiator at the UN climate talks welcomed the climate pact adopted by EU leaders on Friday as a “positive step,” but criticised carbon reduction goals set by US president-elect Barack Obama as too weak.(AFP/File/Wojtek Radwanski)

“We welcome that,” Su said. “It is important that European Union continue to take the lead in the international cooperation to address climate change.”

He added, though: “Maybe some of the positions have been watered down compared to 2007.

“Of course, we understand in the face of the international financial crisis, countries put more efforts to address that crisis. But we think measures to address climate change should not in any way be delayed or watered down.”

Su — whose fast-industrialising nation has overtaken the United States as the world’s leading emitter of CO2 — qualified this.

“I also heard the very firm political commitments from the ministers of the EU and from the European environment commissioner” Stavros Dimas, he said.

The European Union‘s so-called 20-20-20 package seeks to cut greenhouse-gas emissions by 20 percent by 2020, make 20-percent energy savings and bring renewable energy sources up to 20 percent of total energy use.

The Chinese negotiator said Obama’s plan to reduce US greenhouse gas emissions to 1990 levels by 2020 was well short of the mark.

Read the rest:


EU leaders focus on climate deal

December 12, 2008

European Union leaders are said to be close to a compromise agreement in Brussels on how to achieve ambitious targets to fight global warming.

They are trying to agree a mechanism to cut EU carbon emissions by 20% by 2020.

Environmental groups have reacted angrily, criticising EU proposals on emissions trading which have emerged.


Scientists say carbon dioxide emissions need to be cut by 25-40% by 2020 for there to be a reasonable chance of avoiding dangerous climate change.

The impact of the financial crisis is undermining the EU’s long-term goal to build a new, low carbon economy.

BBC environmental analyst Roger Harrabin says the repercussions will make it much harder for the EU to achieve the 30% emissions cut it has promised if the rest of the world agrees to the new UN climate deal next year.

Read the rest:

U.N.: Mexico Will Cut Emissions 10% By 2050 If U.S., Japan Pay

December 12, 2008

If you are an American you heard this right: Mexico will go to work on cleaning up its factories that produce tons of pollution if you pay.  But this won’t happen soon…

To improve the quality of the environment, China, Russia and everyone else have offered to limit the industries of the U.S., Japan and Canada — and give them the bill to pay “emerging economies” to have cleaner industries….


Developing countries upbraided rich nations at U.N. climate talks Thursday, saying they were refusing to act boldly enough to stop global warming. Mexico sought to prod others into action by becoming the first developing country to announce a cap on greenhouse gas emissions.

As 145 environment ministers and other leaders gathered for the final phase of the two-week talks, delegates from poor countries made emotional pleas to rich countries to take the lead in cutting the heat-trapping gases that their factories have pumped into the air since the Industrial Revolution.

By VANESSA GERA, Associated Press Writer

Former U.S. vice president Al Gore, right, receives an Honorary ... 
Former U.S. vice president Al Gore, right, receives an Honorary Doctorate from Professor Bronislaw Marciniak, left, at the Poznan University, Poland, Thursday, Dec. 11, 2008. Gore is in Poland to participate in the UN climate change conference in Poznan where more than 10, 000 delegates from 186 governments, businesses and environmental groups meet to agree on a new climate treaty in Copenhagen at the end of 2009 to succeed the Kyoto Protocol.(AP Photo/Czarek Sokolowski)

Countries like the United States, Canada and Japan have resisted deep emissions cuts without similar sacrifice from the developing world. They argue that unilateral action on their part would harm their economies, and would not solve the crisis if industrializing countries like China and India keep spewing out ever more carbon dioxide.

The attitude of the rich countries “borders on the immoral and is counterproductive,” said John Ashe, Antigua’s ambassador to the U.N., speaking on behalf of 130 developing countries plus China.

Mexico DF City.jpg

Above: Mexico City sparkles on a rare clear evening conceded that “our negotiations are by far not progressing fast enough. We are not making any progress on crucial issues.”

German Environment Minister Sigmar Gabriel

“If industrialized countries carry on playing games with words in an attempt to shirk their responsibilities, we will become a laughing stock,” Gabriel said.

To spur global collective action, Mexico’s environment secretary, Juan Rafael Elvira, announced his country’s plan to cut 2002 greenhouse gas emission levels by 50 percent by 2050. Still, he said Mexico’s goal of using solar power, wind and other clean technologies could only be reached with financial and technological help from wealthier nations.

The Mexican plan includes establishing a cap-and-trade system that would set emissions limits on certain sectors, such as cement, electricity and oil refining, which account for the vast majority of its emissions. Companies that reduce their emissions below those limits could sell their unused allowances on the international carbon market.

The move makes Mexico the only developing country to set a voluntary national target below current levels, said Antonio Hill, senior policy adviser for Oxfam. South Korea has said it would announce an emissions cap next year, and South Africa has a detailed plan to peak emissions in 2025.

Tourists walk through heavy fog over Tiananmen Square in Beijing ...
Tourists walk through heavy fog over Tiananmen Square in Beijing in 2007. China warned its heavy dependence on coal to fuel its fast-growing economy made it difficult to control greenhouse gas emissions, but said fighting global warming remained imperative.(AFP/File/Teh Eng Koon)

“It’s a very significant step because a major emerging economy is saying that it will put a limit on its emissions for key sectors which account for the majority of its emissions,” said Jake Schmidt, international climate policy director for the Natural Resources Defense Council.

Officials at the talks in Poland are working on a new worldwide treaty to cut greenhouse gas emissions. It is supposed to be concluded next December in Copenhagen, Denmark, and would replace the Kyoto Protocol, which expires in 2012.

Environmentalists have also sharply criticized the rich countries, saying they have done too little to battle global warming. But many developing countries, including Brazil, China, South Africa, and now Mexico, have won praise for taking strong steps in fighting climate change.

Read the rest: