(AFP) – Jul 9, 2008
BERLIN (AFP) — The compromise on global warming struck by the leaders of the Group of Eight industrialised nations is inadequate, the head of the UN Environment Programme said Wednesday, adding his voice to other criticisms.
Asked by German NDR radio if the agreement concluded Tuesday at the G-8 summit in Japan was a success and would halt climate change, Achim Steiner replied, "No way."
At least they didn't take a step backwards but I believe we are still a long way from what we need today in terms of action," he said.
At their summit in the resort town of Toyako, G8 leaders agreed to "consider and adopt" the goal of achieving a cut of at least 50 percent in worldwide carbon emissions by 2050, but they made no targeted promise for action in the medium term.
"We are wasting time, the consequences are becoming more and more dramatic, the cost of reversing the global warming trend is greater and greater, and at the same time we are having problems -- particularly in the industrialised countries -- taking great steps forward internationally," Steiner said.
Leading scientists have also said the G8's stance on global warming was too vague and too distant to brake the oncoming juggernaut of climate change.
Experts acknowledged the usefulness of the G8 goal, but the accord did not mention a base year by which the 50-percent cut would be compared, nor did it identify what cuts would be made in the next decade, a period critical for determining whether the fight against climate change will succeed or fail.
The Group of Eight (Britain, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Russia and the United States) also failed to make headway in talks with leaders of growing emerging economies on tackling global warming.
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