By Michael F. Haverluck
The U.S. and other developed nations are reconsidering their commitments to fight global warming before the upcoming 17th Climate Change Conference in Durban, South Africa.
The United Nations wants representatives of world governments and international organizations to advance its agenda to fight climate change at Durban 2011. But despite Barack Obama’s full-fledged support for the green agenda early in his presidency, he has become increasingly hesitant to engage in some of the U.N.’s costly climate programs.
A major topic on the Durban agenda, Nov. 28 through Dec. 9, is the extension of the Kyoto Protocol. The agreement binds 37 developed nations to reduce greenhouse emissions from 1997 to 2012 through implementing regulations.
But doubts about global warming science, as well as the declining world economy, have contributed to many developed countries getting cold feet.
“Of the major players in the Kyoto Protocol, my sense is that the EU is the only one still considering signing up in some fashion to a second commitment period,” said U.S. Special Envoy for Climate Change Todd Stern while discussing Durban 2011 at a meeting on global warming in Mexico City. “Japan is clearly not, Russia is not, Canada is not and Australia appears unlikely.”