注册 登录  
 加关注
   显示下一条  |  关闭
温馨提示!由于新浪微博认证机制调整,您的新浪微博帐号绑定已过期,请重新绑定!立即重新绑定新浪微博》  |  关闭

管清友

晴耕雨读

 
 
 

日志

 
 

路透社记者采访:金融危机要钱,气候变化要命   

2008-11-07 09:22:19|  分类: 采访 |  标签: |举报 |字号 订阅

  下载LOFTER 我的照片书  |

November 6, 2008 in | 0 comments | Post a comment

China set to take the initiative in climate talks

China set to take the initiative in climate talks A general view shows the sixth plenary session of China's parliament, National People's Congress, at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing March 16, 2008. REUTERS/Alfred Cheng Jin


By Chris Buckley

BEIJING (Reuters) - China is seeking to seize the initiative in talks on cutting the world's greenhouse gas pollution, pressing rich nations even as global financial turmoil and Barack Obama's victory recast climate change diplomacy.

From Friday, Beijing hosts a two-day conference to promote a new multi-billion-dollar international fund to invest in climate-friendly technology for the Third World, and it wants rich economies to devote as much as 1 percent of their GDPs to helping poor countries fight global warming.

China wants the clean energy and industry technology plan high in negotiations for a new climate change pact. Without such help, it argues, the smokestacks of developing countries will belch ever more greenhouse gases into the air.

But Beijing's new demands also carry a wider message: that it is shedding its role as a retiring if high-stakes player at the table of environmental diplomacy. It wants a bigger say.

"There's growing external pressure on China and also its own problems with energy and the environment, and these factors are coming together to make it more active and focused on climate change," said Goerild Heggelund, an expert on Chinese climate change policy at the Fridtjof Nansen Institute in Norway.

President-elect Barack Obama's entry into the White House early next year, vowing greater action on climate change, will also lift expectations of China, said Guan Qingyou, a climate policy researcher at Tsinghua University in Beijing.

"With U.S. policy changes, there will also be more pressure on China to show initiative," he said. "Eyes will be on us."

Governments hope to seal the new climate pact by the end of 2009 and Beijing's growing yet still measured activism may play a critical role in deciding their outcome.

China is adamant against binding caps on its emissions. But experts shaping Beijing's stance said it could move further and faster in curbing its greenhouse gas pollution -- if the rich powers move much further and faster on technology and funding.

"If this technology problem is solved, then all the other problems are much easier to solve," said Cui Dapeng, a climate change expert at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences.

But experts said the global downturn now makes realizing China's technology demands much more difficult.

"The financial crisis obviously throws everything into a mess," said John Barton, a Stanford University law professor who studied climate technology transfer issues. "It will certainly make public-sector funding from the developed world difficult."

RISING EMISSIONS, RISING STAKES

The heart of China's climate change dilemma is its fast-rising output of greenhouse gases trapping more solar heat in the atmosphere, risking a dangerous, even catastrophic intensification of droughts, floods and storms and rising seas.

Beijing has not released official figures for emissions growth from factories, power plants, vehicles and land clearing over the past 14 years. But many scientists abroad say China's output of carbon dioxide, the main greenhouse gas, now outstrips that of the United States, the world's top emitter for more than a century.

Recent Chinese studies have echoed those foreign projections, forecasting a jump in emissions over coming decades.

What to do about China is then crucial in negotiations to create a successor to the current Kyoto Protocol, the pact that spells out nations' duties to combat climate change. Under the protocol, developing nations do not have to cap emissions, one reason Washington has refused to ratify it.

As negotiators seek a successor to the current protocol, which expires in late 2012, Western powers want China and other industrializing powers to accept firm goals to control emissions.

But Beijing calls such demands an affront to fairness. It points to the rich nations' much higher per capita emissions and to their role in the accumulation of greenhouse gas pollution.

If developed states offer dramatically expanded technology transfers and adaptation funds for poorer nations, however, Beijing will be more open to compromise, said many Chinese experts.

"China may be making these demands in order to later make concessions or compromises on other issues," said Zhang Haibin, a professor of environmental diplomacy at Peking University.

China may consider earlier than expected absolute cuts in its greenhouse gas emissions; by, say, 2025 or 2030, he said.

Chinese researchers have said other areas where their government may be coaxed to accept firmer goals include sectoral deals to curtail emissions of worst-offending industries and carbon tax schemes, said Heggelund.

HARSH ECONOMIC HEADWINDS

But China's climate policy offensive faces chilling economic headwinds that will make it even more difficult to persuade rich powers to hand over cash and potentially lucrative technology.

Beijing's plan calls for an inter-government agency that will channel funds and loan support to researchers and companies giving green know-how and equipment to the Third World.

But global economic woes are likely to suck away potential international commitment to fund such an initiative, making it all the more difficult to reach an overall agreement.

"Now we have to make the case that the financial crisis takes money but climate change claims lives and still deserves urgent action," said Guan of Tsinghua University. "That's not easy right now."

(Editing by Clarence Fernandez)

 

Obama climate shift could add pressure on China
Thu Nov 6, 2008 8:17am EST  Email | Print | Share| Reprints | Single Page | Recommend (0) [-] Text [+] By Alister Doyle, Environment Correspondent - Analysis

OSLO (Reuters) - The United States has a chance to regain lost leadership in fighting climate change under President-elect Barack Obama that would add pressure on countries such as China to do more, experts say.

Yet world economic gloom will make it hard to work out a new U.N. climate treaty by a planned deadline of the end of 2009, even with a more enthusiastic president than George W. Bush.

Many foreign experts hailed Obama's plan to cap greenhouse gas emissions as a welcome shift from Bush, who kept the United States isolated from 37 other industrial nations by rejecting the U.N.'s carbon-capping Kyoto Protocol.

"The world's leading economy...has moved from being a brake on progressive policy-making to potentially becoming a locomotive," said Achim Steiner, head of the U.N. Environment Program.

Steiner and other green experts welcomed Obama's victory speech that defined top challenges as "two wars, a planet in peril, the worst financial crisis in a century."

By contrast, Bush did not mention "climate change" in a farewell speech to the United Nations in September.

He views Kyoto as too costly and said it wrongly omitted goals for poor nations such as China and India. The United States effectively ditched Kyoto in 1997 when the Senate voted 95-0 against its key principles under President Bill Clinton.

Obama will quickly have to move beyond just words, but foreign experts said the change in rhetoric may help. Poor nations have taken a lack of strong climate action by the United States, the world's richest economy, as an excuse to wait.

"An Obama victory puts more pressure on China...because if the United States becomes more active, that will lift expectations on China as well," said Guan Qingyou, a climate policy researcher at Tsinghua University in Beijing.

TOP EMITTERS

China and the United States are the top emitters, but U.S. emissions per citizen are four times those of China.

Obama may not have time to work out details of U.S. climate policies before the end of 2009, when 190 nations plan to agree a new climate deal in Copenhagen. In the worst case, the talks could end in stalemate, or spill into 2010.

Obama "has a lot to do in a very short time," said Connie Hedegaard, Denmark's Climate Change Minister, who will host talks on the new climate treaty to succeed Kyoto. Rich nations are meant to set new greenhouse gas cuts, perhaps for 2020.

"I wish I knew the answer to that question," Yvo de Boer, head of the U.N. Climate Change Secretariat, said when asked if the United States would be ready to outline cuts in Copenhagen.

"The U.S. election outcome could provide new momentum to the climate negotiations. But we should remain realistic," South African Environment Minister Marthinus van Schalkwyk said. Obama's plans were "not as ambitious as we would like to see."  Continued...

 

Obama climate shift could add pressure on China
Thu Nov 6, 2008 8:17am EST  Email | Print | Share| Reprints | Single Page | Recommend (0) [-] Text [+] De Boer said he was "very encouraged" by Obama's stated policies and said he hoped the president-elect, or a top adviser, would visit the next round of U.N. climate negotiations in Poznan, Poland, on December 1-12.

He said he was less pessimistic than before that economic downturn would distract from fighting global warming. Big new investments to create "green jobs," for instance in renewable energies such as solar or wind power, could solve both.

"I originally had the fear that the financial crisis would be devastating to the negotiating process," he said.

ECONOMY, HEALTH, IRAQ

Opinion polls have shown Americans want Obama to focus on the economy, health care and the Iraq war. Energy, including renewables, comes far down the spending wish list.

The U.N. Climate Panel says it will cost up to 0.12 percent of global gross domestic product every year to 2050 to avert the worst of global warming, blamed mainly on burning fossil fuels. It predicts droughts, disease, heatwaves and rising seas.

Obama aims to cut U.S. emissions by 80 percent below 1990 levels by 2050, but Copenhagen is about shorter-term cuts. He plans investments in a clean energy economy of up to $150 billion over 10 years and foresees 5 million new green jobs.

A possible spanner for Copenhagen is that developed nations, including the United States, have promised "comparable" efforts.

The European Union plans cuts of 20 percent below 1990 levels by 2020. But U.S. emissions were 14 percent above 1990 levels in 2006 -- to match EU cuts, Obama would have to axe by an economy-throttling 30 percent by 2020 from 2006.

(With extra reporting by David Fogarty in Singapore, Karin Jensen in Copenhagen and Chris Buckley in Beijing)

(Editing by Philippa Fletcher)

  评论这张
 
阅读(911)| 评论(1)
推荐 转载

历史上的今天

在LOFTER的更多文章

评论

<#--最新日志,群博日志--> <#--推荐日志--> <#--引用记录--> <#--博主推荐--> <#--随机阅读--> <#--首页推荐--> <#--历史上的今天--> <#--被推荐日志--> <#--上一篇,下一篇--> <#-- 热度 --> <#-- 网易新闻广告 --> <#--右边模块结构--> <#--评论模块结构--> <#--引用模块结构--> <#--博主发起的投票-->
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

页脚

网易公司版权所有 ©1997-2017