Differences Over the Kyoto Protocol at Bangkok Climate Meeting

From calls to action in New York, the focus then turned to Bangkok the following week, where one of the many United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change meetings in preparation for the big meeting in Copenhagen in December. The meeting was difficult. It seemed like many parties wanted more from others than they would offer themselves. The United States is obviously a particular focus. Without a climate change bill it is unable to make specific commitments on mitigation targets or on funding amounts (No deal on crucial issues as UN climate talks end).

In the last few months China has been strikingly vocal on its views about the climate negotiations, both urging progress toward a successful conclusion and strenuously criticizing at various times both the U.S. and Europe. (China says rich countries undercut climate talks). [There are a lot of concerns about the structure of the treaty, how to hold Europe committed to the Kyoto Protocol when the U.S. never joined and other complexities. The strong public stance of the Chinese delegation has both its difficult side – emphasizing differences – and its more hopeful side – they are fully engaged. Hopefully China’s strongly expressed stance will actually help move negotiations forward by clearly expressing their concerns and pushing for resolution. Speaking with lots of delegates in Bangkok, they all clearly want an agreement and they are making it clear that they are taking significant steps to address climate change and will continue to do so, but they also want other negotiators to hear their points of view.

The Chinese government has quite a good website of its own – with both international positions and domestic policies listed – take a look (China Climate Change Info-Net).