ClimateGate news

Thursday, June 7, 2007

G8 plays Let's Make a Deal

The CBC is reporting that the G8 leaders have reached a deal on climate change:

Group of Eight leaders have agreed on a plan calling for "substantial cuts" to greenhouse gas emissions, German Chancellor Angela Merkel announced Thursday.

While few details of the agreement have been released, Merkel, at the G8 summit in Heiligendamm, Germany, said the goal is to cut greenhouse gas emissions in half by 2050.
2050? Sounds a lot more like the recent Bush proposal than the deal Merkel was after.
The agreement does not commit to Merkel's "two-degree" goal to cap a rise in the Earth's temperature to within two degrees.

Still, Merkel said leaders took the tough step of declaring emissions have to be cut in half.
Prime Minister Stephen Harper had this to say:
Harper said there needs to be extensive discussion before settling on finite global targets. He said targets chosen too hastily do not work, citing the Liberal government's commitment to the Kyoto Protocol in 1998.

"We committed to targets without thinking those targets through 10 years ago and then we were unable to reach them," he said.

"When others [G8 leaders] say we want a full discussion before we determine what reasonable targets are, I think that's something we have to be flexible on."
The opposition parties are predictably furious. But they have always wanted to follow the Europeans on climate change, so it should be interesting to see how they spin their opposition to this new agreement.

Is it the end of Kyoto? As the CBC article says, "few details of the agreement have been released" and until they are, we really won't know.

Update: Tony Blair's comments on the deal:
"I think everyone wants to be part of a post-Kyoto deal.

"Everyone wants to try and make sure that that is a deal - it's got to be - that includes all the major emitters.

"And everyone wants to make sure that that deal can then command board agreement right across the international community and deliver what people want to see both for reasons of the environment and for reasons of energy security."


Bush talked of a "nostalgic" moment at Blair's last G8 session and repeated his pledge that the US would be "actively involved if not taking the lead in the post-Kyoto agreement".
A few more details from the BBC:
German Chancellor Angela Merkel said the G8 would negotiate within a UN framework to seek a replacement for the Kyoto Protocol by the end of 2009.

No mandatory target was set for the cuts, but Mrs Merkel's preference for a 50% emissions cut by the year 2050 was included in the agreed statement.

Developing nations should also cut emissions, the leaders agreed.


Her preferred benchmark of 50% cuts by 2050 - backed by the EU, Canada and Japan - would be given serious consideration, she said.

According to an extract from the agreed text published on the G8 website, the leaders agreed to take "strong and early" action.

"Taking into account the scientific knowledge as represented in the recent IPCC [Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change] reports, global greenhouse gas emissions must stop rising, followed by substantial global emission reductions," the text says.

Yvo de Boer, head of the UN's climate change division, quickly welcomed the agreement.


Anonymous said...

and then there is a rented Dog of Peter Mackay

Anonymous said...

Now here is what they should be doing: