Keeping pressure focused on the US, China and other major polluters to join urgent international talks on concrete climate commitments.
Brussels has reiterated an appeal that comprehensive negotiations must get under way this December in Indonesia.
This came as experts at a major conference in Bangkok discussed the third UN report on climate change, and agreed fighting global warming is affordable.
In Brussels, the EU’s environment commissioner, Stavros Dimas, questioned the Americans’ position:
6;It is actually very strange that the US, which is claiming that it would not participate in an international agreement if these fast developing countries do not participate, refuses to commit themselves to start negotiations in Bali towards the end of the year. If we do not start negotiations how shall we know that this countries do not come on board?6;
Cost assessments linked to the impact on the global economy if corrective action on climate is ignored are inevitably compared with the projected costs of stablising greenhouse gas emissions.
At discussions in Brussels, Nobel laureate Amartya Sen said that developing economies want history taken into account:
6;Europe and America polluted the world for a very long time, and suddenly to change the rules just when development becomes very fast in China and moving that way in India. It is a problem which one has to address. I think what they want is an idea of a solution that appears fair to them. The only way of dealing with it is to start talking and decide what would be a fair solution.6;
The Kyoto Protocol, whose first phase runs out in 2012, is the only broad agreement to reduce emissions.
The US rejected it in 2001 on the grounds that it would harm its economy, and that booming developing nations were not bound by it.
China opposes the UN’s Bangkok agreement, where a panel of scientists established base limits for CO2 emissions in the years to come.