Compromise Deal Keeps Kyoto Protocol Weak But Alive
Green Party co-leader Jeanette Fitzsimons today welcomed the compromise deal on greenhouse gas emissions struck at Bonn
"While the Kyoto protocol has been watered down, at least it is still alive and offers hope to the world that global
warming can be tackled effectively," she said. "While it won't do much for the climate, it will change international
politics to know that a global deal can be reached without the United States' participation.
"The most important achievement at Bonn was to show that the world can move forward on an issue of planetary importance
without the United States.
"It is as though the rest of the world has grown up, decided to act collectively and leave the bully in his corner.
Hopefully that will breach the stranglehold that one country has had over international politics and international
Ms Fitzsimons said the Kyoto protocol, as it now stands, will do little for the climate in the next 15 years.
"But the framework is now in place, and as the effects of global warming bite deeper, that framework can be used to
negotiate more realistic greenhouse reductions for the period after 2012."
"It sticks in the throats of environmentalists that the agreement has been reached by allowing the largest per capita
polluters even more "flexibility" - for example to trade improved management of existing forests for the right to emit
"Realistically, this flexibility means that countries signed up to the protocol will be able to pump out significantly
more greenhouse gases than the targets originally set in Kyoto. Exactly how much more won't be known until the details
of the Bonn compromise are reached and released.
"On its own, this protocol won't solve global warming, but it is an essential step on the way.