Australia Ratifies Kyoto, and the US is ALONE

Australia Ratifies Kyoto, and the US is ALONE

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Australia has now ratified the Kyoto Protocol and the United States is left as the only major country refusing to join the agreement. A recent change in government in Australia means that the US is now truly by itself in refusing to commit to this initial step towards reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

It didn’t take long in the negotiations for countries to offer ideas on how to get the U.S. on board with the rest of the world. A proposal by China put forward today suggested that the US be put on an alternative industrialized country track under the negotiations. Pressure on the US to re-engage will certainly continue throughout the two weeks of negotiations, although we all know not to expect anything other than further stalling and blocking from the Bush administration.

The U.S. delegation has made it clear that it’s not too keen on helping other countries, either. In response to a proposal for a fund that would help share clean energy technologies with developing countries, a U.S. official remarked, “we will not support a fund for the buy down of intellectual property.” And although the delegation said that they support adaptation, U.S. officials made it clear that they will not provide any funding to the two voluntary adaptation funds under the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change.