Recent offers by the United States and China appear modest compared with European Union proposals and scientists’ demands, but probably represent only first offers, said Achim Steiner, director of the U.N. Environment Program.
“This is a dramatic negotiation process in its final lap,” Steiner told The Associated Press in an interview ahead of the Dec. 7-18, U.N.-led talks in the Danish capital.
“To me, there is enough reason to have a sense of optimism right now that a deal could be made in Copenhagen that is not just a political deal, but is meaningful in terms of the scientific targets,” he said after meeting environmental groups in Geneva.
Governments have cautioned that the conference is unlikely to produce a binding agreement to substantially cut emissions of carbon dioxide and other gases believed responsible for global warming.
See also “EU leaders want details on China emissions plan” from AP.
See also a special edition from the East West Center’s East-West Dialogue called “Climate Commitments to 2050: A Roadmap for China.”