Dec 17 2007

Bali and Energy Bill Leave Environmentalists Disappointed

Feature Stories | Published 17 Dec 2007, 11:53 am | Comments Off on Bali and Energy Bill Leave Environmentalists Disappointed -

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baliGUEST: Tyson Slocum, Director of the Energy Program at Public Citizen

In the aftermath of the Bali Climate Conference, which world leaders are calling, “historic,” the US appears to have destroyed all hopes for international agreement on ending global warming. Even worse than the outcome of the Kyoto talks, 190 nations agreed that while something had to be done about the planet heating up, no targets or dates were set. In fact, all that was agreed upon was that further talks are needed over the next two years in order to come to agreement after the Kyoto Protocol expires in 2012 – in two years George W. Bush will be out of power. However, since the meetings in Kyoto ten years ago, all countries have only increased their carbon emissions. While Europe was initially pushing for a specific goal of 25-40% cuts in carbon emissions in Bali, those numbers have now been relegated to a footnote in the final agreement. According to reports from attending delegates, US negotiators remained obstructionist until the final hour of the two-week convention and changed their position only after boos and hisses from other delegates. While international news media covered the conference in-depth, most major US news media barely touched the story. Meanwhile, the Senate passed the 2007 Energy Bill, by a vote of 86-8. The bill increases automobile energy efficiency and promotes the use of Ethanol, a so-called bio-fuel.

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