APEC meeting to focus on climate change, US stalls, political bluster to prevail

APEC meeting to focus on climate change, US stalls, political bluster to prevail
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The Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) is meeting this week in Australia and according to the conference chair, the goal will be to reach a consensus on a greenhouse gas emissions strategy.

“We have here … the world’s biggest emitters — China and the United States — and to have that discussion with them and to see if we can get an agreement on principles for managing carbon emissions and cooperation across the world’s major economies would be a really good step forward,” said Australian Treasurer Peter Costello.

Not surprisingly, the US contingent to the APEC meeting is downplaying the likelihood of such an outcome. The US is claiming that such an agreement would be premature arguing that the next major meeting in December of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change will be the appropriate venue for such a commitment.

Aussie Prime Minister, John Howard disagrees and has described the APEC meeting as one of the most important gatherings of world leaders to discuss climate change since the 1992 earth summit in Rio de Janeiro.

Until recently PM John Howard has been a global warming “skeptic” and has been accused of delaying action on reducing greenhouse gas emissions in Australia. Howard was in power when Australia refused t ratify the Kyoto Protocol.

With the opposition parties making political hay over Howard’s inaction on global warming and a national election in Australia most likely to occur in late 2007, no doubt Howard is attempting to re-position himself as a climate crusader.

Unfortunately for Howard, his attempt at new flashy green credentials is probably too late.

And unfortunately, for the world’s climate and the millions of people affected, the most likely outcome of the APEC meeting will be more hot air with a big helping of further delay.

APEC meeting to focus on climate change, US stalls, political bluster to prevail

Kevin is a contributor and strategic adviser to DeSmogBlog.

He runs the digital marketing agency Spake Media House. Named a “Green Hero” by Rolling Stone Magazine and one of the “Top 50 Tweeters” on climate change and environment issues, Kevin has appeared in major news media outlets around the world for his work on digital campaigning.

Kevin has been involved in the public policy arena in both the United States and Canada for more than a decade. For five years he was the managing editor of DeSmogBlog.com. In this role, Kevin’s research into the “climate denial industry” and the right-wing think tank networks was featured in news media articles around the world. He is most well known for his ground-breaking research into David and Charles Koch’s massive financial investments in the Republican and tea party networks.

Kevin is the first person to be designated a “Certified Expert” on the political and community organizing platform NationBuilder.

Prior to DeSmogBlog, Kevin worked in various political and government roles. He was Senior Advisor to the Minister of State for Multiculturalism and a Special Assistant to the Minister of State for Asia Pacific, Foreign Affairs for the Government of Canada. Kevin also worked in various roles in the British Columbia provincial government in the Office of the Premier and the Ministry of Health.

In 2008 Kevin co-founded a groundbreaking new online election tool called Vote for Environment which was later nominated for a World Summit Award in recognition of the world’s best e-Content and innovative ICT applications.

Kevin moved to Washington, DC in 2010 where he worked for two years as the Director of Online Strategy for Greenpeace USA and has since returned to his hometown of Vancouver, Canada.

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