ROME - Developing countries, including emerging economic giants China and India, are not prepared to take the blame for climate change, the head of the G77 group of developing nations said on Tuesday. Some countries in Europe and North America want developing countries to accept limits on their emissions of greenhouse gases when the first phase of the Kyoto Protocol runs out in 2012, but the G77 looks likely to oppose that.
"Most environmental degradation that's happened has been historically caused by the industrial world," said Munir Akram, Pakistan's permanent representative to the United Nations and chairman of the G77 group in New York.
"China, India and others are at the stage where they are now taking off and it's quite natural that their emissions of carbon are increasing," he told a news conference after a two-day meeting of G77 diplomats in Rome.
"There's a sort of propaganda effort to try to shift the blame for environmental degradation on to these fast-growing economies, and the motives are not very well disguised."
Whilst this may all be true it does not help us get closer to a solution. Only when climate change impacts heavily on the economies of the developing countries will action be taken. Given China and India may be the two of the worst effected countries we may not have to wait too long.
I read that China in one year added power generating capactity equal to that of the entire UK, 90% of which is from coal. That is a scary statistic if true.
There is a long way to go.