Next month, German Chancellor Angela Merkel will convene a summit of the G8 countries, which will issue a joint declaration on climate change. Here’s how that’s going:
A draft proposal dated April 2007 that is being debated in Bonn, Germany, this weekend by senior officials of the Group of Eight includes a pledge to limit the global temperature rise this century to 3.6 degrees Fahrenheit, as well as an agreement to reduce worldwide greenhouse gas emissions to 50 percent below 1990 levels by 2050.
The United States is seeking to strike that section, the documents show.
Oh, and this:
The documents show that American officials are also trying to eliminate draft language that says, “We acknowledge that the U.N. climate process is the appropriate forum for negotiating future global action on climate change.” Industrial and developing countries have used the United Nations as the forum for crafting climate agreements for years.
The U.S. representatives in Bonn … are trying to soften the message of the 18-page climate change document by deleting sections that would call on the industrialized world to modify activities linked to recent warming. They also proposed striking one of the document’s opening phrases, which says, "We underline that tackling climate change is an imperative, not a choice. We firmly agree that resolute and concerted international action is urgently needed in order to reduce global greenhouse gas emissions and sustain our common basis of living."
Bush administration officials are also resisting calls for efficiency targets in the declaration, in particular a sentence that reads, "Therefore we will increase the energy efficiency of our economies so that energy consumption by 2020 will be at least 30 percent lower compared to a business-as-usual scenario."
These are such proud days to be American, no?