U.S. Shows Interest in Post-2012 Climate Plan, E.U. Says
BRUSSELS The United States has shown interest in planning beyond 2012 to reduce emissions of heat-trapping gases that are believed to be causing global warming, the European Commission said on Monday.
European Environment Commissioner Stavros Dimas met Stephen Johnson, head of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, on Monday as U.N. talks on future measures to cut emissions got underway in Bonn, Germany.
"There appears to be some movement on the part of the Americans to look at climate change as a problem that is as serious as we think it is," said Barbara Helfferich, a spokeswoman for Dimas, after the meeting in Brussels.
"The Americans have signalled they have shown some interest in a post-2012 regime," she said.
The U.N.'s Kyoto Protocol, under which almost 40 industrialised countries have agreed to cap their emissions, runs until 2012.
The United States pulled out of Kyoto in 2001, saying it would cost jobs and wrongly excluded developing nations.
Since then, Washington has said that it wants to cut the amount of greenhouse gases emitted for every dollar of U.S. economic output by 18 percent over the decade to 2012.
The policy will slow a rise in emissions but stops short of caps sought by Kyoto.