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President Bush’s Climate Speech: Too Little Too Late

WASHINGTON – Dr. Richard Moss, Vice President and Managing Director of Climate Change for the World Wildlife Fund (WWF), and member of the U.N. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, issued the following statement today in response to President Bush’s speech on climate change:

President Bush is not offering a realistic policy proposal.  His plan is so lacking in substance, it seems designed only to undercut efforts in Congress and at the international level to reduce climate emissions. 

What the President is proposing is too little too late, putting us on track for a climate disaster.  Halting the growth of emissions by 2025 is woefully inadequate. While no one knows exactly what the right emissions target is, it’s very clear that by 2020 emissions must be in sharp decline.  Further, the President offers no realistic mechanism for achieving his goal.  Merely hoping for technology advances is not a serious policy proposal. 

The President also fails to live up to the commitment made by the U.S. when it became a party to the U.N. Framework Convention on Climate Change. The U.S. and other developed countries under the convention are required to take the lead in reducing their emissions. Absent that leadership and compliance with the treaty, developing countries with much lower per-capita emissions – such as China and India – are much less likely to intensify their efforts to limit emissions.

It is time to look beyond this president and focus on the steps his successor will take to address the climate threat