I have been remiss in posting both the State Journal Register and the Associated Press’ web sites were I steal…oh I mean “fair usage” all of these articles.
And the latest, while America fiddles the world burns.
U.N. Chief: Adaptation to warmer world could cost $20 trillion
By JOHN HEILPRIN
THE ASSOCIATED PRESS__________
UNITED NATIONS — Global warming could cost the world up to $20 trillion over
two decades for cleaner energy sources and do the most harm to people who can
least afford to adapt, U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon warns in a new report.
Ban’s report provides an overview of U.N. climate efforts to help the 192-nation
General Assembly prepare for a key two-day climate debate in mid-February.
That debate is intended to shape overall U.N. policy on climate change, i
ncluding how nations can adapt to a warmer world and ways of supporting the
U.N.-led negotiations toward a new climate treaty by 2009, U.N. officials said
Wednesday. The treaty, replacing the Kyoto Protocol when it expires in 2012,
could shape the course of climate change for decades to come. The Kyoto pact
requires 37 industrial nations to reduce greenhouse gases by a relatively modest
5 percent on average.Much of the focus has been on the United States, the only
major industrial nation to reject the treaty, and on fast-developing nations such as
China and India.
Many are looking to. next year, when a new U.S. president takes the White House.
The leading contenders in both political parties favor doing more than the voluntary
approaches and call for new technologies that President Bush espouses.
In his 52-page report, Ban says that global investments of $15 trillion to $20 trillion
over the next 20 to 25 years may be required “to place the world on a markedly
different and sustainable energy trajectory.” Today, the global energy industry
spends about $300 billion a year in new plants, transmission networks and other new
investment, according to U.N. figures. Srgjan Kerim, a Macedonian diplomat and
economics professor who is president of the U.N. General Assembly, told
The Associated Press that cutting greenhouse gases alone will not be enough
to pull island nations, sub-Saharan Africa and other particularly vulnerable parts
of the world back from the brink of irreversible harm.
Annie Petsonk, a lawyer for the advocacy group Environmental Defense,
said global warming will mostly affect poor people and minorities, because
the wealthy can spend more to adapt.
But then again it’s money well spent!