Report China to Share Burden of CO2 Emission Cuts
UPDATE: Our hopes have been dashed as China has announced it has no plans to cap their carbon emissions but will instead seek to lower the carbon intensity [search] of its economy. This is the same lame U.S. policy. The number 1 and number 2 carbon polluters in the world are increasingly international pariah states.
Japanese media reports that China will soon commit to “participate proactively in talks on an international framework to fight global warming from 2013”. This could include negotiated participation in mandatory greenhouse gas emission cuts including carbon dioxide. China will soon be the largest producer of greenhouse gases, yet China has not been obligated under Kyoto [search] to make carbon cuts. This was negotiated as a matter of equity, acknowledging that developed countries were responsible historically for most emissions and developing nations deserved more time to lift living standards before also capping their emissions. Despite major disparities in per capita emissions [search] between the U.S. and China, President Bush has used this as justification for America's refusal to participate in Kyoto. Well maybe, just maybe things will change as China now appears set to bear “its share of responsibility in fighting global warming”. The formal announcement may come as part of broader agreement between China and Japan, who are expected to reach a 10-point environment preservation and energy-saving agreement. As recently as November, China rejected proposals to revise Kyoto that would have obligated it to reduce its output of greenhouse gases. China's policy turn around indicates its increasing concern with the serious deterioration of its environment that has accompanied its economic growth. Should China indeed agree to carbon and other greenhouse emissions cuts, the United States' and Australia's refusal to participate in Kyoto, and engage in good faith in ongoing climate negotiations, will be revealed to be the selfish, self-serving and deadly policy it is. The Earth's future depends upon China following through on this pledge.