Vague G8 Goals Deflate Green Hopes

'Fuzzy-minded' declaration on climate change sinks hopes for immediate action
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 9, 2008 2:08 AM CDT
Leaders of Group of Eight take shovels to plant trees commemorating the G8 summit prior to a group photo session in Toyako, northern Japan Tuesday, July 8, 2008.    (AP Photo/RIA Novosti, Dmitry Astakhov, Presidential Press Service)
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(Newser) – G8 leaders are hailing an agreement to cut carbon emissions in half by 2050 as "major progress" in combating climate change—but their failure to come up with concrete shorter-term goals is a major letdown, Bryan Walsh writes in Time. The agreement, so vague it doesn't even say which year is to be used as a starting point, is unlikely to spur the immediate changes needed to avert possible catastrophe.

The "fuzzy-minded statement" is especially disappointing because China and India had signaled their readiness to act before 2020 in concert with developed nations, breaking a long-standing stalemate on who should cut emissions first, Walsh writes. "The only strong signal the G8 declaration sends is that the world is still not ready to act," he complains.