Iowa Public Television


U.S. Resists G8 Pressure on Global Warming

posted on July 8, 2005

Hello, I'm Mark Pearson.

The death toll in the terrorist bombings in London climbed to more than 50 on Friday. That number is expected to rise still higher as investigators continue to sort through the rubble.

*The timing of Thursday's attack almost certainly was tied to the G8 economic summit being hosted by England. The leaders of the G8 nations, including President Bush, stood by British Prime Minster Tony Blair as he addressed his countrymen following the attacks.

The G8 nations had gathered to tackle a substantial agenda, including debt relief for Africa, international trade matters and global warming.

Progress was made on some of those key issues, but NOT on global warming. The leading cause of THAT environmental concern is greenhouse gas emissions ... and the leading producer of greenhouse gasses is the United States. But at the summit, the U.S. remained unresponsive to pressure from its G8 partners to sign on to the so-called Kyoto Protocol.

U.S. Resists G8 Pressure on Global Warming The Kyoto Protocol took effect in February and gives its participants seven years to reduce their combined greenhouse gas emissions by 5.2 percent over 1990 levels. But the Bush administration has rejected adoption of the protocol, despite intense lobbying efforts from environmentalists and other G8 members.

In a British television interview this week, the president acknowledged that climate change was a "significant" issue. But he called for shifting the focus away from limits on greenhouse gas emissions ... to new technologies that reduce environmental damage. The president said it's more important to find alternatives to fossil fuels in order to provide cleaner air and reduce dependence on foreign oil.

Environmental groups charged the administration with "actively trying to water down G8 efforts" to address global warming. Some suggested it was time to leave the U.S. behind in the struggle to limit greenhouse gas emissions.

Tags: climate change global warming government news