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Toward A Global Climate Deal

“The United States wants a successful and comprehensive arrangement on climate change for the post-2012 period,” said U.S. Under Secretary of State for Democracy and Global Affairs Paula Dobriansky. Speaking at a forum on climate change in London, Dr. Dobriansky said, the U.S. is “actively engaged in the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, we support the Bali Roadmap, and we want a new approach to address the key elements of the Bali Roadmap: mitigation, financing, adaptation, and technology,” she said. The U.S., she noted, also supports action aimed at addressing deforestation and land misuse.

“Developed countries alone cannot solve climate change,” said Dr. Dobriansky. All major economies must commit to action that will cut global emissions of greenhouse gases, if our efforts are to be environmentally effective and sustainable. Under Secretary of State Dobriansky also stressed that “the basic tenets of the U.S. approach to climate negotiations are bipartisan.” They will extend beyond the administration of President George Bush, she said.

The U.S. is taking action at home to slow, stop, and reverse emissions growth. The European Union and the United States, for example, have comparable emissions trends since 2000.

The Major Economies Meetings on Energy Security and Climate Change seek to identify common ground in support of the discussions under the U.N. Framework Convention on Climate Change. The process offers an opportunity to build the kind of consensus among the biggest economies that will be needed to achieve an effective global agreement. Significantly, the seventeen economies participating in the Major Economies Meetings comprise over eighty percent of the world’s greenhouse gas emissions, over eighty percent of the world’s consumption of energy, and over eighty percent of the world’s economy.

The U.S. said Under Secretary of State Dobriansky looks forward “to a strong statement from Major Economies leaders in July.” Dr. Dobriansky said the U.S. hopes, in particular, that the leaders can reach agreement on a shared long-term global greenhouse gas reduction goal and a stated willingness to have midterm national goals and plans reflected in binding international commitments, while recognizing that those commitments would vary country by country according to demographics, energy mix, or other national circumstances.