UN: Canada still obliged to fight climate change

Dec 13, 2011
The UN climate chief on Tuesday voiced regret over Canada's withdrawal from the Kyoto Protocol and said that the country still had legal obligations to work against global warming. Christiana Figueres, pictured in February 2011, also expressed surprise that Canada chose to announce its decision just after more than 190 countries reached a hard-fought accord in Durban, South Africa.

The UN climate chief on Tuesday voiced regret over Canada's withdrawal from the Kyoto Protocol and said that the country still had legal obligations to work against global warming.

Christiana Figueres, head of the UN Framework Convention on , also expressed surprise that Canada chose to announce its decision just after more than 190 countries reached a hard-fought accord in Durban, South Africa.

"I regret that Canada has announced it will withdraw and am surprised over its timing," Figueres said in a statement.

"Whether or not Canada is a party to the , it has a under the Convention to reduce its emissions, and a to itself and future generations to lead in the global effort," she said.

"Industrialized countries whose emissions have risen significantly since 1990, as is the case for Canada, remain in a weaker position to call on developing countries to limit their emissions," she said.

Canada on Monday became the first country formally to quit the landmark Kyoto Protocol as it sought to avoid paying penalties of up to CAN$14 billion (US$13.6 billion) for missing targets on cutting .

But Canada, like virtually all countries, remains part of the UN -- set up by the 1992 Rio Earth Summit which called in broad terms for global action against human-caused global warming.

The Kyoto Protocol, reached in 1997 after marathon talks in Japan's ancient capital, requires only wealthy nations to cut emissions blamed for climate change.

Canada joins the United States as the only major industrial nation to shun Kyoto. US president George W. Bush rejected the treaty as one of his first acts in office, calling it unfair.

"Canada is obviously a sovereign country and can make its own decision," Todd Stern, the US envoy for , told reporters on a conference call when asked about the move.

"The US, as you all know, is not in Kyoto, so it's not something certainly that we're going to criticize or take a position on," he said.

But Stern said he doubted the impact of Canada's decision, noting that the European Union is the only major player that has signed on to an extension of Kyoto whose obligations were scheduled to run out at the end of 2012.

The Europeans offered the new round of Kyoto pledges on emission cuts in a bid to encourage developing countries to sign on to the Durban agreement, which calls for the first climate treaty covering the whole world by 2015.

"I think Kyoto, it's fair to say, is more the past than the future," Stern said.

"If the discussion is what's going to be in a new regime that includes everybody, that's got developed and in and how that's going to get structured, I don't actually think that Canada being in or out of Kyoto is going to really have a big effect," Stern said.

A number of other countries criticized Canada including France, which called the decision "bad news for the fight against climate change," and China, which urged Canada to "face up to its responsibilities and obligations."

Explore further: Tens of thousands expected at New York climate march

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Canada's Kyoto withdrawal under fire from China

Dec 13, 2011

Canada's historic decision to withdraw from the Kyoto protocol provoked heavy criticism from China on Tuesday, with Beijing saying the move went against international efforts to combat climate change. ...

EU urges roadmap this year on climate action

Oct 03, 2011

The European Union urged all nations Sunday to make clear how they will tackle climate change, saying the world needs a roadmap this year on future action even if a treaty appears out of reach.

Back-room negotiations begin on climate intentions

Dec 05, 2011

(AP) -- Back-room negotiations began in earnest Monday on a deal to rescue the only treaty governing greenhouse gas reductions and to launch talks on a broader agreement to include the world's largest polluters: ...

UN climate chief warns on Kyoto Protocol deadline

Apr 04, 2011

Commitments by most developed countries to cut carbon emissions are likely to expire at the end of next year without a new round of legally binding pledges, the UN's climate chief warned Monday.

Recommended for you

Green dream: Can UN summit revive climate issue?

6 hours ago

Five years ago, the environment movement was in its heyday as politicians, actors, rock stars and protestors demanded a looming UN summit brake the juggernaut of climate change.

Rio's Olympic golf course in legal bunker

Sep 18, 2014

The return of golf to the Olympics after what will be 112 years by the time Rio hosts South America's first Games in 2016 comes amid accusations environmental laws were got round to build the facility in ...

User comments : 3

Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

astro_optics
3 / 5 (4) Dec 13, 2011
Christiana Figueres looks evil!
omatumr
1 / 5 (5) Dec 14, 2011
Tonight there are reports of last ditch efforts to save the crooks. It won't work:

http://noconsensu...nt-62756

Earlier today NASA belatedly started asking questions, . . .

Giving $1.4 M to Washington University to confirm or deny reports that silicon carbide (SiC) grains in the Murchison meteorite are "fall-out" particles from the supernova explosion that made our elements.

That question was answered 15 years ago by Kuroda and Myers using data from Washington University, but NASA, the US NAS, the UK's RS, and the UN's IPCC apparently didn't want anyone to know that Earth's heat source - the Sun - is not stable as they claimed, but the violently unstable remains of a supernova that gave birth to the Solar Syatem five billion (5 Gyr) ago.

Here's the rest of the story with links to data and observations:

http://dl.dropbox...asks.pdf

With deep regrets,
Oliver K. Manuel
www.omatumr.com/
omatumr
1 / 5 (4) Dec 15, 2011
Christiana Figueres looks evil!


Here's the rest of the story:

"Fear not, the Universe is in good hands!"

http://dl.dropbox..._Not.pdf

Although Big Brother is scared, crazy, and out of control:

1. Scared:
http://joannenova...idation/

http://judithcurr...t-149143

http://noconsensu...nt-62436

2. Crazy; May seize totalitarian control:

www.infowars.com/...itizens/

3. Out of control, like a "Delinquent Teenager"

www.amazon.com/De...p;sr=1-1

Oliver K. Manuel
http://myprofile....anuelo09
FrankHerbert
Dec 15, 2011
This comment has been removed by a moderator.