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Monday, December 3, 2007

Bali negotiates global climate deal for 2009

A Greenpeace activist dressed in a polar bear costume hugs a globe in sweltering heat outside the U.N. Climate Change Conference in Nusa Dua, Bali island December 3, 2007. (photo to the left)

On Sunday, BALI, Indonesia saw the arrival of delegates from as many as 190 nations gathered to discuss future prospects as well as expand upon the "fragile understanding" that the fight against global warming must be extended to all countries with a deal in 2009.

The U.N.'s top climate change official made clear and in no uncertain terms before thousands of delegates that the world would be watching their efforts and conclusions as a result of their Dec 3-14 talks in an Indonesian beach resort. He also stressed the time factor explaining that time was of the essence if the avoidance of more droughts, heatwaves and rising seas was to be achieved. "We're already seeing many of the impacts of climate change," Yvo de Boer, head of the U.N. Climate Change Secretariat, who also spoke to at the news conference on the eve of the meeting in the clandestinely guarded venue added, "We are on a very dangerous path."

The Bali meeting will see the attendance of senior officials with 130 environment ministers and will seek to commence formal negotiations concluding with a new U.N. climate pact in 2009 expected to embrace other countries led by the United States and China. As many as 10,000 politicians, officials, activists and journalists are expected to be present at the talks on the tropical resort island. Thirty-six industrialized nations in the Kyoto Protocol have implemented restrictions on their greenhouse gas emissions, largely from burning fossil fuels. These restrictions are in place until to 2012.

Meanwhile, Indonesia has planted millions of trees as they have the ability to absorb carbon which would ultimately expel up to 900,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide. The astonishing effects from the planting of trees alone will absorb far more from the environment than the emissions from burning fossil fuels caused by delegates while staying in Bali and flying to and from the island, concluded Witoelar. Pines, acacia, and meranti trees, a type of tropical hardwood, have been planted on about 4,500 hectares (11,000 acres) on the islands of Sumatra, Kalimantan and Java, Witoelar said.

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