Plan B for climate-change agreement

John Dimsdale Oct 28, 2009
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Plan B for climate-change agreement

John Dimsdale Oct 28, 2009
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Bill Radke: Negotiations leading up to December’s climate-change summit in Copenhagen, Denmark — not going smoothly. Yesterday, the director of the UN team coordinating the talks admitted Copenhagen is unlikely to produce a global treaty. So what’s Plan B? Marketplace’s John Dimsdale reports from Washington.


John Dimsdale: One big speed bump on the road to Copenhagen is Congress has yet to limit carbon emissions. Stuart Eizenstat was U.S. negotiator at the last UN climate conference in Kyoto, Japan in 1997. He says the Copenhagen meeting can still achieve what he calls a “framework agreement.”

STUART EIZENSTAT: In which the basic elements of a treaty are developed at Copenhagen and the details are then filled out particularly after the United States Congress hands President Obama a cap-and-trade bill that he can sign.

Eizenstat says any future global agreement has to be more flexible since U.S. caps on emissions won’t be anywhere near Europe’s.

Paul Bledsoe at the National Commission on Energy Policy agrees a framework agreement will keep the momentum going.

PAUL BLEDSOE: If it involves China and India and U.S. and other non-Kyoto signatories, it would be a very important step forward.

Bledsoe expects a new worldwide binding treaty can still be achieved — next year.

In Washington I’m John Dimsdale for Marketplace.

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