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Kyoto II climate meeting opens in Thailand





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Talks by the U.N. Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) to negotiate a replacement to the Kyoto Accord began in Bangkok today with a plea by the Secretary General for unity and a common purpose toward the remediation of climate change.
Three months after the landmark agreement on a road map towards strengthened international action on climate change reached in Bali, Indonesia, the next round of negotiations shifts to the neighbouring country of Thailand and its capital, Bangkok. The talks are taking place between 31 March to 4 April 2008 at the United Nations Conference Centre (UNCC) of the Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific. [webcast]
"The world is waiting for a solution that is long-term and economically viable," U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki Moon said in a video address to the 1,000 delegates from 190 nations gathered in Bangkok.


The previously unscheduled (by the UNFCCC) week-long meeting is the result of an agreement that was reached in the last moments of the Bali Climate Change Summit last December, after pressure was put upon the United States to
participate in the process.

"Following a speech by the representative of Papua New Guinea, where he called upon the United States to: 'lead, follow or get out of the way:'

The United States made a dramatic reversal Saturday, first rejecting and then accepting a compromise to set the stage for intense negotiations in the next two years aimed at reducing carbon dioxide emissions worldwide. The final result was a global warming pact that provides for negotiating rounds to conclude in 2009."
"It's the first test of whether the goodwill and good intentions that were present in Bali are still there when they get down to the hard negotiations," said Angela Anderson of the Pew Environment Group.

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