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Former White House Adviser Urges U.S.-China Climate Change Summit

meetingA former White House adviser suggests the U.S. and China should hold a summit featuring an agreement on climate change, Reuters reports.

A summit between the top two emitters of greenhouse gases would help overcome domestic misgivings in each country and create international support for a new global pack by the end of 2009, said Kenneth Lieberthal, a former National Security Council officer in the Clinton administration.

Previously, the Bush administration refused to ratify the Kyoto Protocol citing China’s refusal to accept emissions caps as one reason. The Kyoto Protocol will expire at the end of 2012.

A bilateral agreement and clearer emissions undertakings from China would help overcome oppositions to the U.S. joining a successor to the Kyoto Protocol, said Lieberthal.

Currently rich nations have converged on targets of around 15 percent GHG emission reductions by 2020. However, cuts of 15 percent from current levels falls short of the 25 percent to 40 percent reductions advised by scientists in the U.N. Climate Panel.

Representatives from 22 of the world’s major carbon emitting countries recently met in Tokyo to participate in an informal session on ways to tackle climate change. The U.S. has been facing pressure to pass legislation to move forward with climate goals before scheduled international talks in Copenhagen in December.

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One thought on “Former White House Adviser Urges U.S.-China Climate Change Summit

  1. A US-China summit would be a good start … legislation would help … but let’s not forget the critical role businesses can and should play in addressing the climate crisis. For-profit enterprise brings a unique perspective and resources to the table, and can impact positive change in ways government can not. I just published a blog post on this topic: http://earthkeeper.com/blog/.

    Kate King

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