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Bush Convenes Climate Conference in Washington

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Bush Convenes Climate Conference in Washington

Environment

Bush Convenes Climate Conference in Washington

Bush Convenes Climate Conference in Washington

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At a U.N. meeting this week, more than 80 heads of state met to focus on the problem of climate change. President Bush did not participate in that meeting, choosing instead to convene a separate two-day conference in Washington. Will the new round of talks lead to any changes in U.S. climate policy?

Elliot Diringer, director of international strategies at the Pew Center on Global Climate Change

Bush Climate-Change Conference Has Doubters

Bush Climate-Change Conference Has Doubters

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President Bush has invited 15 countries to a two-day conference on global climate change. But the meeting is being greeted with some skepticism.

The U.S. emits a quarter of the world's greenhouse gases, and the Bush administration has been criticized for its unwillingness to commit to cutting those emissions.

Mr. Bush took the U.S. out of the Kyoto protocol, the international treaty designed to cut greenhouse gas emissions. Some countries are afraid Mr. Bush will use this week's talks as a substitute for a binding treaty when Kyoto expires in five years.

The administration counters that the president has done far more on climate change than he is getting credit for. Officials point to President Bush's proposal to replace 20 percent of the country's gasoline with renewable fuels.

Mr. Bush is expected to propose that the group set a long-term global goal for reducing emissions, and that each nation outline its own plans by the end of next year.

There is agreement on one point: Without a strong commitment from the U.S. and China, real progress on global warming will be difficult.

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