Leaders hope to build climate momentum

2015-11-17 22:22


Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Manila - With a high-stakes deadline two weeks away, President Barack Obama hopes to build momentum on Wednesday for a broad and potentially legacy-burnishing global climate change agreement.

At a meeting of chief executives in this Southeast Asian capital, Obama was expected to urge business leaders to reduce emissions in their operations and use their sway to pressure governments to sign on to the international pact. Obama and dozens of other leaders are slated to convene in Paris at the end of the month to finalize the carbon-cutting deal.

The CEOs gathered on the sidelines of the Asia Pacific Economic Co-operation summit, an annual forum for 21 member nations typically used to hash out the region's overlapping economic interests.

This year security issues seeped onto the agenda. In the wake of the brutal attacks in Paris, talk of a response and containing the spread of Islamic radicalism filled both the formal meetings and hallway chatter.

But while Obama privately discusses ways of ramping up pressure on the Islamic State group, he came ready to use his public spotlight to zero in on the landmark climate deal. The president has made the issue a top priority as his term in office winds down. With no hope for passing legislation through Congress, Obama has shifted to international lobbying.

The White House points to some success. On his last trip through Asia, Obama and Chinese President Xi Jinping issued in a joint declaration that set a 2030 deadline for carbon emissions to stop rising in China. The deal seemed to mark a shift in China's approach to carbon reduction, and a diplomatic win for the president.

Xi is also slated to speak to the chief executives on Wednesday, along with Indonesian Vice President Jusuf Kalla, and Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto. Alibaba Chair Jack Ma will welcome the leaders.

Some critics say that in an effort to clinch a deal, Obama and US negotiators have already acquiesced to an agreement that will be too weak to prevent the worst effects of climate change.

Ratchet up over time

The White House says it's searching for "significant commitments" that will ratchet up over time. The US has pushed for each nation's contribution to be revisited every five years.

"It's going to require countries making good on promises to cut carbon pollution, and to doing so in a transparent, verifiable manner," White House spokesman Josh Earnest said, as Obama left for a string of summits in Turkey and Asia. "That is our goal."

Obama also plans to ramp up his global lobbying campaign on another front during the trip. The president is slated to meet with leaders from the 11 others countries backing the Trans Pacific Partnership free trade deal and urge them to quickly ratify the deal.

As with climate, Obama faces his own hurdles at home on trade. Large portions of the president's party - including the leading candidate for the Democratic nomination, Hillary Rodham Clinton - oppose the deal. Meanwhile, many Republicans appear willing to deviate from their free-trader pasts to avoid giving Obama a major campaign-year win.

Obama will gather with the leaders on Wednesday for a celebratory photo.

Read more on:    us  |  china  |  climate change

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

Inside News24


5 top leg exercises for men

Here’s our selection of the five best leg exercises that you can do in the comfort of your own home.


You won't want to miss...

WATCH: Pornhub is giving users free access to premium content this holidays
5 top leg exercises for men
10 best dressed men of 2017
How to open a beer bottle without an opener
Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.