WRAPUP 2-Kyoto row dims prospects at U.N. climate talks

* Rich, poor clash anew on Kyoto Protocol

* Mexican minister urges compromise

* Some signs of progress
(Recasts, updates)

By Robert Campbell and Patrick Rucker

CANCUN, Mexico, Dec 4 (BestGrowthStock) – Clashes between rich and
developing nations over the future of the Kyoto Protocol for
fighting global warming clouded U.N. climate talks on Saturday
despite glimmers of progress in some areas.

“I urge you to look for compromise,” Mexican Foreign
Minister Patricia Espinosa told negotiators at the 189-nation
talks that seek a modest package of measures to slow climate

Wrangling over whether to extend Kyoto, which obliges
almost 40 developed nations to cut greenhouse emissions until
2012, overshadowed a review of work halfway through the talks
that end on Dec. 10.

Extending Kyoto “is indeed the cornerstone of a successful
outcome in Cancun,” said Abdulla Alsaidi of Yemen, who chairs
the group of developing nations at the talks, meant to avert
more floods, droughts, desertification and rising sea levels.

Chinese delegate Su Wei said an extension of Kyoto was an
“indispensable element” of a deal. Countries, including
Bolivia, Venezuela and small island states, also criticized
wealthy states.

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Developing nations note that Kyoto imposes a legal
obligation on its supporters to extend the pact. But Kyoto
backers — especially Japan, Canada and Russia — want a new,
broader treaty that also binds emerging economies to act.

“We need a new, legally binding instrument with the
participation of all major emitters,” said Japan’s Mitsuo
Sakaba. One U.N. official said a compromise would have to be
found in “shades of gray between the two extremes.


Climate talks are a test of a new, shifting world order
where China’s strong growth has propelled it past the United
States to become the world’s top emitter of greenhouse gases
stoking global warming and past Japan to become the second
biggest economy. Many developed nations are struggling with
budget cuts and high unemployment.

The United States never ratified Kyoto, saying it would
cost U.S. jobs and wrongly omitted developing nations. That
decision is also at the heart of Kyoto nations’ reluctance to
extend the protocal unilaterally with no guarantee of action by

All nations say a treaty is out of reach after world
leaders failed to reach a binding deal last year at a summit in

Still, there were some signs of progress in narrowing other
differences, such as elements of how to share green
technologies worldwide, delegates said.

The talks are also trying to agree on a new fund to channel
aid to poor nations and ways to protect tropical forests.

“Progress has been made in some areas but there areas where
parties are still holding to national positions and even some
areas going backwards in important issues,” said Margaret
Mukahanana-Sangarwe of Zimbabwe, chair of one session.

Away from the deadlocked government talks, business leaders
sought new ways to help shift to a greener economy. Corporate
executives said governments should legislate energy-efficiency
targets to help cut consumption in buildings, power plants and

“Solar may be sexy but energy efficiency is the gift that
keeps on giving,” said Adam Muellerweiss, commercial director
of energy and climate change for Dow Chemical Co (DOW.N: ).

Espinosa said she would brief about 60 environment
ministers on Sunday about her hopes for ending the deadlock.

In an earlier session, the United States and some
developing nations criticized a separate U.N. draft text
outlining long-term actions by all countries to slow global
(Editing by Peter Cooney)

WRAPUP 2-Kyoto row dims prospects at U.N. climate talks