September 7, 2007 at 10:00am
It is very unusual during an APEC meeting for discussions on a declaration to undergo a debate. Currently, discussions on the APEC Climate Change declaration that John Howard and George Bush proposed are met by skepticism and disbelief.
Clearly, countries such as China, Malaysia, Thailand and Philippines will not agree to being pushed into an anti-Kyoto Protocol agreement in Sydney. These are the countries who have already signed up to Kyoto Protocol, with the full realization that in the future they will need to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions and embrace real solutions such as energy efficiency and renewable energy.
It is ironic that a government such as Australia who is peddling false solutions such as coal, a climate culprit, to developing countries such as the Philippines is also blaming developing nations for the deadlock on the APEC Climate Change declaration.
Howard and Bush have very little credibility on the issue at APEC specially that both governments spent a decade undermining global agreements to combat climate change. Both of them should give up pushing at the APEC for a new international agreement that is alternative to Kyoto.
If Howard and Bush are sincere in addressing the issue of climate change, both governments should ratify Kyoto and set legally-binding targets to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.