12/12/2008 - The effort to come up with a global warming treaty to replace the 1997 Kyoto Protocol inched forward Saturday morning as delegates to United Nations-sponsored talks here agreed on a narrowly framed interim document that leaves all the difficult negotiating until next year.
The modest result leaves the three-year process far short of the goal of concluding a binding agreement by the end of 2009 to curb greenhouse gas emissions and slow the planet's warming, which under current conditions scientists predict will reach dangerous and irreversible levels by the end of the century, if not sooner.
Given the minimal progress made in negotiations this year, several key players said, it will almost certainly take direct involvement by President-elect Barack Obama and other world leaders to produce a meaningful agreement next year.
* * *
"There's tremendous expectations of the United States, and there should be, given Obama's position," said Angela Anderson, director of the Pew Environment Group's international global warming campaign. "What that means in the context of this negotiation is translating his climate and energy package into a negotiating position pretty early in the year."
Read the full article Interim Climate Pact Approved on the Washington Post's Web site.
Pew is no longer active in this line of work, but for more information, visit the main Pew Campaign on Global Warming page.