Support Marketplace

Big hurdles to overcome in climate talks

Members of the German organization for the protection of the environment BUND (Bund fuer Umwelt und Naturschutz) demonstrate in front of the U.N. conference venue on climate change in Bonn, Germany.

TEXT OF STORY

Bob Moon: One hundred eighty-five nations are represented in Bonn, Germany, at the biggest talks on climate change since last December's ill-fated United Nations summit in Copenhagen. For the next 12 days, negotiators will try to set the groundwork for yet another meeting later this year in Mexico, where they hope to reach a binding pact to fight global warming.

Kyle James reports from Berlin.


KYLE JAMES: The delegates gathering today in Germany aren't really expecting great things, says Wendel Trio of the environmental group Greenpeace.

WENDEL Trio: The mood is still very cautious. I think a lot of countries are still recovering from what happened in Copenhagen.

There, the high-profile global summit meant to save the planet ended in bickering and without a legally-binding accord. This time, are working on smaller climate initiatives instead of trying for a big overarching deal all in one go.

Even then, it won't be easy, says Carlos Busquets of the environment division of the International Chamber of Commerce. There's a big rift in Bonn between the rich developed nations and the poorer developing ones.

Carlos Busquets: How do you make that balance for these economies that need to grow to lift their populations out of poverty with, at the same time, the acute need to reduce greenhouse gas emissions?

In Copenhagen, the developed world pledged $30 billion over three years to help poorer nations reduce emissions and adapt to a changing climate.

Greenpeace's Wendel Trio says the developing world is skeptical rich countries will follow through.

TRIO: Developing countries are saying if you want us to do take action, who is going to pay the bill? What is happening with the money? And where is the money and will it come or not?

On day one of the meeting, delegates couldn't agree on the wording of the text that would serve as the basis for going forward. Given all the hurdles, most experts are skeptical that a binding climate pact can be worked out in Cancun, Mexico, in December.

In Berlin, I'm Kyle James for Marketplace.

Comments

I agree to American Public Media's Terms and Conditions.
With Generous Support From...