Archive for Tuesday, June 5, 2007

China says U.S. must take lead on climate change

June 5, 2007

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— China acknowledged Monday that it soon may become the world's biggest source of harmful greenhouse gases but said the United States and other advanced countries must take the lead in fighting global warming because they had been polluting heavily for longer.

Unveiling its first climate-action plan, China pledged greater energy efficiency and offered robust targets for developing solar, wind and other renewable energy sources.

"We are ready to work with the rest of the international community to reduce the effects of global warming," said Ma Kai, the minister in charge of the powerful National Development and Reform Commission.

While pledging to slow the relentless growth of greenhouse-gas emissions - blamed for global warming - Ma rejected mandatory caps for China on those emissions.

He said it would be "neither realistic nor fair" to make China and other nations sacrifice economic growth and postpone modernization to fight global warming when it was an "indisputable fact" that well-off nations had produced 75 percent of the carbon-dioxide emissions from fossil fuels from 1950 to 2002.

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