China seeks binding climate treaty late 2011-report

Fri Sep 24, 2010 9:51am GMT

* China unyielding on issues of "principle" - negotiator

* United States is biggest obstacle to treaty - negotiator

BEIJING, Sept 24 (Reuters) - China wants the world to seal a binding climate change treaty by late 2011, a Chinese negotiator said in a newspaper on Friday, blaming U.S. politics for impeding talks and making a deal on global warming impossible this year.

Li Gao, a senior Chinese negotiator on climate change, said his government would remain unyielding on issues of "principle" in the talks aimed at forging a successor to the Kyoto Protocol. The first period of that key treaty on fighting global warming expires at the end of 2012.

Li also vowed to keep pressing rich countries to promise deeper cuts to carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases from human activity that are stoking global warming, said the China Economic Times, which reported his comments.

Many governments and experts have already dismissed hopes for a full climate change treaty at the next major negotiation meeting, to be held in Cancun, Mexico at the end of this year.

Li underscored that gloom, but also said his government hoped Cancun could be a stepping stone to negotiations next year that will culminate in a meeting in South Africa in November.

"China hopes that based on the outcomes from Cancun, we'll be able to settle on a legally binding document at the meeting in South Africa," Li said, according to the Chinese-language newspaper.

"After the South Africa meeting, we'll move to concrete implementation."   Continued...

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