Belmont Club

Follow the money

A Reuters article describes an Obama administration to get 16 “major economies” to sign up to a “climate change” pact, but observers are unsure whether this is because the administration wants to substitute a weaker pact in place of a UN-sponsored one or whether it truly wants to lead the way.

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. President Barack Obama on Saturday invited 16 “major economies” including the European Union and the United Nations to take part in a forum on climate change to facilitate a U.N. pact on global warming. … Bush’s “major economies” initiative drew scepticism from participants, who were wary the process was his administration’s way of circumventing broader U.N. talks to forge an international deal. …

The president, who took office in January, has said he wants the United States to take the lead in global warming talks. … In a statement, the White House said the forum would “help generate the political leadership necessary” to achieve an international pact to cut greenhouse gas emissions later this year.

It said the meeting would spur dialogue among developed and developing countries about the issue, “and advance the exploration of concrete initiatives and joint ventures that increase the supply of clean energy while cutting greenhouse gas emissions.” The major economies include: Australia, Brazil, Britain, Canada, China, the European Union, France, Germany, India, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Korea, Mexico, Russia, South Africa and the United States. Denmark, which is hosting the U.N. meeting in December to forge a pact that would take over from the Kyoto Protocol, was also invited. …

Obama wants to cut U.S. emissions by roughly 15 percent back to 1990 levels by 2020 — tougher than Bush, who saw U.S. emissions peaking as late as 2025.

The “climate change” issue is in large part about money. Fox News described a UN document which saw the new “Green Economy” as a way to transfer “trillions of dollars” from one set of hands to another. If Obama wants to lead the process rather than leave it to the UN, it is in part about who controls the redistribution as much as it is about the ‘environment’.

A United Nations document on “climate change” that will be distributed to a major environmental conclave next week envisions a huge reordering of the world economy, likely involving trillions of dollars in wealth transfer, millions of job losses and gains, new taxes, industrial relocations, new tariffs and subsidies, and complicated payments for greenhouse gas abatement schemes and carbon taxes — all under the supervision of the world body.

Those and other results are blandly discussed in a discretely worded United Nations “information note” on potential consequences of the measures that industrialized countries will likely have to take to implement the Copenhagen Accord, the successor to the Kyoto Treaty, after it is negotiated and signed by December 2009. The Obama administration has said it supports the treaty process if, in the words of a U.S. State Department spokesman, it can come up with an “effective framework” for dealing with global warming.

Follow the money.

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