Tony Blair trying to entice U.S. into “Kyoto-lite” climate treaty

With much of the industrialized world heaping scorn on the U.S. for spurning the recently ratified Kyoto Protocol, the Bush administration may soon get a chance to regain a smidgeon of international cred on the climate-change issue. British Prime Minister Tony Blair, in an effort to bolster his tarnished green image, is secretly developing plans for a new international climate treaty — dubbed “Kyoto-lite” by one insider — that he hopes President Bush can be convinced to embrace. Blair met with U.S. Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) last week to discuss ways to broker such an agreement. Of course, because the fledgling treaty is meant to be palatable to Bush, it won’t actually call for reductions in greenhouse-gas emissions. Rather, it’ll focus on developing new, clean technologies, as well as acknowledging scientific agreement on the nature and scale of the climate-change threat, something the Bush administration has resisted. But hey, admitting you have a problem is the first step, right?