China Clashes with U.S., Europe at Climate Talks

UN climate talks in Bangkok got tense at moments, according to an AP report:

China’s top climate envoy insisted Wednesday that it is unfair to expect all countries to play a role in combating global warming, leading to a rare public spat with delegates from the U.S. and Europe.

The unexpected exchange at a news conference at the U.N. climate talks in Bangkok laid bare what has been clear in at the negotiating tables for days — that a long-running divide between rich and poor countries shows no sign of abating despite promises by some major developing countries to cut their emissions of the gases responsible for climate change.

That poses a problem as negotiators work feverishly to craft a new climate pact to replace the Kyoto Protocol, which expires in 2012. World leaders are hoping to forge a new deal in December in Copenhagen.

Also, from Bloomberg, “Climate a Bigger Challenge Than Recession, China Says”:

China, the world’s biggest polluter, said climate change is a challenge that it shares with the world and is a more formidable one than the global recession.

The world’s third-largest economy is committed to helping fight climate change and has taken “responsible” steps, Vice Minister of Science and Technology Liu Yanhua said at a conference in Hong Kong today, reiterating the stance of President Hu Jintao.