US envoy: Climate deal still possible in Mexico

Oct 22, 2010
U.S. Special Envoy for Climate Change Todd Stern gestures while speaking during a press conference at the U.S. Embassy in Beijing Friday, Oct. 22, 2010. (AP Photo/Alexander F. Yuan)

(AP) -- A global agreement to curb carbon emissions is possible at an upcoming U.N. climate conference but hinges on the efforts and political will of countries, the U.S. climate envoy Todd Stern said Friday in Beijing.

"It's incumbent on all of us working in this area to try to bend all efforts over the course of the next few weeks to find compromises and language necessary to get a deal," he said.

Stern was in China for two days of talks with his Chinese counterpart Xie Zhenhua about the climate conference in Cancun as well as bilateral cooperation on climate change issues.

The United States and China, the world's two largest carbon emitters, have repeatedly clashed over key components of an international treaty aimed at curbing the greenhouse gases blamed for global warming, most recently at U.N. in the northern Chinese city of Tianjin earlier this month.

Stern said he is aware time is running short before the starts at the end of November. However, "it's not a big mystery what kinds of provisions could help produce an agreement. There's a question of political will among the different players on how to get there," he said.

Rich and poor nations have remained at odds over how to split the burden of emission cuts and how to verify them.

The U.S. wants China and other developing countries to commit to mandatory curbs and submit to international verification. Meanwhile, China says the U.S. and other wealthy countries should make bigger cuts in their emissions, reflecting their larger historical contribution to .

Most countries already say they believe a binding treaty is out of reach at this year's conference but are working on smaller deals that can lay the foundation for a legal framework that could be approved later, possibly in South Africa in 2011.

Stern said his meetings with Xie were "quite constructive," but gave few specifics on whether the two sides had made progress in areas of disagreement.

The long-running, U.N.-brokered climate negotiations are intended to find a replacement for the Kyoto Protocol, which mandated modest emissions reductions and expires in 2012.

Explore further: Australia out of step with new climate momentum

not rated yet
add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Limited progress in climate talks in China

Oct 06, 2010

(AP) -- U.N. climate talks being held in China this week are making limited progress as rich and poor nations remain divided on key issues, negotiators said Wednesday.

India, China agree to cooperate on climate change

Oct 21, 2009

(AP) -- India and China, both major polluters and crucial players in fighting global warming, agreed Wednesday to stand together on climate change issues at a major global conference later this year.

Delegates told to ID achievable goals on climate

Oct 04, 2010

(AP) -- The U.N. climate chief urged countries Monday to search faster for common ground on battling climate change so that a year-end meeting in Mexico can produce results in that fight.

Denmark urges agreement on climate change funds

Oct 23, 2009

(AP) -- Denmark urged the European Union, the United States and other rich countries to commit to financing for a new climate change deal, saying Friday that billions of dollars are needed.

Recommended for you

Gold rush an ecological disaster for Peruvian Amazon

8 hours ago

A lush expanse of Amazon rainforest known as the "Mother of God" is steadily being destroyed in Peru, with the jungle giving way to mercury-filled tailing ponds used to extract the gold hidden underground.

Australia out of step with new climate momentum

10 hours ago

Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott, who rose to power in large part by opposing a tax on greenhouse gas emissions, is finding his country isolated like never before on climate change as the U.S., China ...

User comments : 1

Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

3432682
not rated yet Oct 22, 2010
What is the reason again for crippling 80% of our energy supply? Have they found the missing heat yet?

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.