25 January 2009

Gore to make climate change case to US Senate

AFP in Google News, January 23, 2009

Al Gore to make climate change case to US Senate

WASHINGTON (AFP) — Former US vice president and Nobel prize winner Al Gore will testify on climate change to the US Senate next week ahead of a critical December UN meeting, a leading lawmakers said Thursday.

Democratic Senate Foreign Relations Committee chairman John Kerry said in a statement that Gore, who also won an Oscar for his green documentary "An Inconvenient Truth," would come before his panel on January 28.

"Al Gore has been sounding the alarm on climate change for over three decades, and he understands the urgent need for American engagement and leadership on this issue," said Kerry.

"America must act decisively" if December 2009 UN talks in Copenhagen are to yield agreement on a climate change treaty, said Kerry, who warned "the timeline is short for us to respond to the threat of climate change."

President Barack Obama has said he wants the United States to commit to reducing its greenhouse gas emissions to 1990 levels by 2020, and by 80 percent in 2050, mainly through a 150-billion dollar, 10-year program to develop renewable forms of energy.

Negotiations among the 192-member UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) are mid-way through a two-year "roadmap" set down on the Indonesian island of Bali last year.

The envisioned Copenhagen treaty will amount to an action plan for curbing greenhouse gases and channelling help for vulnerable countries beyond 2012, when current provisions expire under the Kyoto Protocol, which Washington has refused to ratify.

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