Last-Minute US Compromise Saves Bali Talks

Officials agree to reach accord in 2009—after end of Bush term
By Jane Yager,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 15, 2007 6:00 AM CST
German Environment Minister Sigmar Gabriel speaks with members of the Chinese delegation after resolving a conflict during the U.N. Climate Change Conference Saturday Dec. 15, 2007, in Nusa Dua, Bali,...   (Associated Press)
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(Newser) – The Bali climate summit averted failure at the eleventh hour today when the US capitulated under sharp criticism and agreed to further talks to forge a successor treaty to the Kyoto Protocol in 2009 that will include the US and developing nations. The deal came after the US dropped opposition to a proposal that wealthy nations help developing countries reduce pollution. To assuage the US, mandatory and specific carbon limits were dumped from a proposal by the European Union.

A stalemate was broken after European nations, frustrated with the US, threatened Thursday to boycott environmental talks proposed by the Bush administration in Hawaii next month. The conference mood improved when Al Gore encouraged an open-ended deal that could be hammered out after Bush leaves office, when the US will "be somewhere it is not now," the New York Times reports.