President George W Bush has ruled out US backing for any Kyoto-style deal on climate change at the G8 summit.
Speaking to British broadcaster ITV, he said he would instead be talking to fellow leaders about new technologies as a way of tackling global warming.
But he conceded that the issue was one "we've got to deal with" and said human activity was "to some extent" to blame.
This is exactly the type of thing that ensures Bush's legacy will not a positive one. At this point in history, any world leaders not actively doing something to curb destruction of the environment will be remembered as part of the problem, when the brunt of the problem truly comes down on us. I think its pretty safe to lay out blanket statements to this effect at this point in time.
We started as a leader when it came to environmental issues, but that is waning. When it came to CFC emissions, we passed the Clean Air Act, and at this point in time the science concretely shows that it has had a positive effect in curbing destruction of the ozone layer. We can make a difference, and to do so requires going farther then saying "we've got to deal with" this problem. We need to deal with the damn problem.
The approach of the Bush administration seems to begin and end with the idea that "new technology" is going to come around and save us. This is a copout. "New technology" is going to continue to come at a snails pace without government legislation pushing it along. There is very little economic incentive to help the environment. It looks good in commercials, but you don't have to actually be doing anything significant to market yourself as a "green company". The government needs to lead in the form of incentives and concrete deadlines for changes in emission standards.. It does play out on a global stage. The companies that can have the most significant effect on environmental issues are globalized.
We need energy policy. And not just as a domestic economic issue, but as a matter of our foreign policy. We do not even remotely appear as if we have our shit together in this area.
At this point in time, China has better emission standards then we do for new automobiles. That alone should really irk people. Where is this new technology Bush keeps touting going to come from? Beijing?
Concerts for the starving and copouts for the environment... Your term of the day is: Global Leadershit
BBC NEWS | Americas | Bush rejects Kyoto-style G8 deal