Thursday, December 6, 2007

Top US Climate Negotiator on Lieberman-Warner: "I don't know the details"

We know the Bush administration has fallen behind the rest of America and the world on climate change. How far? The Associated Press has the embarrassing details:

First, newly installed Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd reversed his country's long-standing policy by signing the Kyoto pact Monday, leaving the United States as the only major industrialized country to reject the agreement. Rudd called on the U.S. to follow his lead, and the Australian delegation basked in applause and accolades at the opening of the conference in Bali.

The next blow came from a domestic source: Congress. The Senate Environment and Public Works Committee passed a bill Wednesday to cut U.S. emissions by 70 percent by 2050 from electric power plants, manufacturing and transportation, defying the administration's opposition to mandatory caps. [...]

On Thursday, Watson was adamant the Bush administration would stick to its guns, no matter what Australia or the Senate did.

"In our process, a vote for movement of a bill out of committee does not ensure its ultimate passage," he told reporters. "I don't know the details, but we will not alter our posture here."

That last line had me doing a Scooby Doo-style "Wha-huh?" Dr. Harlan L. Watson doesn't know the details of the Climate Security Act, also known as Lieberman-Warner? The Bush administration's senior climate negotiator doesn't feel the need to keep himself appraised of such things?

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