McCain too blames India, China for global warming

May 15th, 2008 - 9:16 pm ICT by admin  

By Arun Kumar
Washington, May 15 (IANS) Like President George Bush, the presumptive Republican Presidential candidate John McCain too has said a new global pact on climate change must include India and China, the “greatest contributors” to global warming. But the US will still have to act if efforts to negotiate an international pact to deal with the problem does not succeed, he said at a campaign rally in Portland, Oregon in what many analysts have seen as a major departure from the Bush administration’s policy on climate change issue.

The New York Times suggested in an editorial that he had at the last minute decided to delete from his speech a proposed tariff on countries like India and China that defy international agreements on emissions, partly because the tariff could be misconstrued as hostile to free trade, which McCain supports.

Like the other two Democratic candidates, Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama, McCain proposes a market-based “cap and trade” system in which power plants and other polluters could meet steadily stricter limits on gases like carbon dioxide - either by reducing emissions on their own or by buying credits from more efficient producers.

His plan seeks to stabilize emissions in several years and then cut them by 60 percent below 1990 levels by 2050.

“We make our own environmental plans and our own resolutions. But working with other nations to arrest climate change can be an even tougher proposition,” Mccain said.

“China, India and other developing economic powers in particular are among the greatest contributors to global warming today - increasing carbon emissions at a furious pace - and they are not receptive to international standards,” he said.

“This set of facts and perceived self-interests proved the undoing of the Kyoto Protocols. As president, I will have to deal with the same set of facts. I will not shirk the mantle of leadership that the US bears… I will not accept the same dead-end of failed diplomacy that claimed Kyoto,” he said.

“If we are going to establish meaningful environmental protocols, then they must include the two nations that have the potential to pollute the air faster, and in greater annual volume, than any nation ever in history,” he said in a direct reference to India and China.

“… we will continue in good faith to negotiate with China and other nations to enact the standards and controls that are in the interest of every nation-whatever their stage of economic development…..and if the efforts to negotiate an international solution that includes China and India does not succeed, we still have an obligation to act,” he said.

“In my approach to global climate-control efforts, we will apply the principle of equal treatment. We will apply the same environmental standards to industries in China, India, and elsewhere that we apply to our own industries,” McCain said.

“And if industrializing countries seek an economic advantage by evading those standards, I would work with the European Union and other like-minded governments that plan to address the global warming problem to develop effective diplomacy, effect a transfer of technology, or other means to engage those countries that decline to enact a similar cap,” he said.

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