US To Hold Separate Talks With No Balihoo!

NUSA DUA, Indonesia (Reuters) - The United States has invited major economies to Hawaii next month for a new round of talks about setting goals to curb greenhouse gas emissions, a senior U.S. official said on Thursday.

The White House sent invitations on for the meeting of 17 major economies, which account for more than 80 percent of greenhouse gas emissions, said Harlan Watson, the chief U.S.climate negotiator. The United States held a first round of the talks in Washington in late September.


This is the most frightening piece of news that’s come out lately. The US is persuading other major economies to get together with them to look at the issue of climate change. It’s not through the UN or with all the other stakeholders of the world, who have been meeting on this issue for the past 15 years. It’s a group the US has hand picked, and these meetings stand to derail the efforts that the international community has put in to date.

This scenario is akin to the schoolyard bully calling a few of the other students together (students he likes) to see what can be done about intimidation in the school’s halls and playgrounds. All the while, every single student has been getting together on their own to try to solve the problem, having already been told by the schoolyard bully that he wasn’t interested in being part of those meetings. The schoolyard bully maintained that he didn’t think intimidation was a problem, that it was being imagined.

The only thing that will come out of this meeting that the US is proposing is a watering down of the Kyoto Protocol, and worse yet, a push on intensity based caps, as opposed to outright hard caps. As we all know, intensity caps aren’t the answer and can actually make the problem worse, and the hesitation of the US, and shamefully Canada, to act in compliance with Kyoto is that hard caps will cost too much, and that too many oil and coal profits will be lost.

LET THIS MESSAGE RING OUT TO THE REST OF THE WORLD: Don’t be lulled into a false sense of security because the schoolyard bully (the US) is making noises like they care about solving climate change now. A tiger doesn’t change their stripes, and with the current US administration, this one’s got some big teeth that even the most diplomatic of smiles can’t conceal.

*** Note: Just so readers don’t think the author is totally pessimistic and jaded, the good news here is that the US administration now knows it actually has an obligation and a responsibility to do something about climate change. It takes a big kid to admit they were wrong. It takes an even bigger one to do the right thing, as opposed to the least painful thing. ***

And I’m sure Harper will be right there.

The Bish administration has only a year left in power and while he starting to express some concern about climate change….I personally think he’s just mouthing the words and has no real concern for the climate’s future.
These separate talks do nothing more than use up time.
Time during which his buddies in the coal and oil industry can carry on business as usual, and it has the potential bonus of derailing any possible binding agreement in Bali.