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UDPATE: Canada Govt Formally Withdraws From Kyoto Protocol


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Wall Street Journal:

OTTAWA (Dow Jones)--The Canadian government said Monday it was formally withdrawing from the Kyoto protocol on climate change--a move it had telegraphed for weeks and said it expects other countries to follow.

Canada's Environment Minister Peter Kent made the announcement, just hours after returning from United Nations-sponsored climate-change talks in Durban, South Africa. At that meeting, delegates from almost 200 countries agreed to draft a new global emissions treaty by 2015.

Even before heading to Durban, the Conservative government of Prime Minister Stephen Harper had said Canada would not make a second commitment to the Kyoto treaty, under which the former Liberal government in 1997 pledged to cut greenhouse gas emissions to 6% below 1990 levels. Kent said the Kyoto pact was a relic of the past, and was futile in combating climate change because it didn't incorporate the three major emitting countries of China, India and the U.S.

"It is now clear that Kyoto is not the path forward for a global solution to climate change. If anything, it is an impediment," Kent told reporters at a media conference in front of the Canadian legislature. "This decision formalizes what we have said--that we would not implement the Kyoto protocol."

Canada's focus was building on the progress made at Durban, and getting a climate-change deal in which all major carbon emitters commit to binding reductions, he said.

Russia and Japan have also both vowed not to recommit to the protocol. Yet, Canada, Russia and Japan have signed on to the new carbon-reducing agreement reached in Durban. Kent said he wouldn't "be surprised" if other countries follow in Canada's footsteps in pulling from Kyoto.

The Conservative government argued the country was in no position to meet its Kyoto obligations when it took power in 2006 following nearly 13 years of Liberal rule. Kent said the country faced financial penalties of roughly C$14 billion (US$13.6 billion) had it remained in Kyoto, even though such fines would have no impact on reducing greenhouse gas reductions.

Kyoto is dead, it just doesn't know it yet...
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Kyoto is dead, it just doesn't know it yet...


Environmental commish consulting lawyers over Kyoto pullout

Jason Fekete



OTTAWA — Canada's environment commissioner said Tuesday his office is consulting lawyers to determine the implications of the Conservative government's decision to withdraw from the Kyoto accord.




Even if Canada officially withdraws from the agreement, a Kyoto-implementation act remains in place that currently requires the environmental watchdog to report on whether the country is meeting its obligations.


"If the act remains, then we will inform Parliament, and the question will be: How will we do this? We have lawyers looking at this actually right now on what the implications will be," Environment Commissioner Scott Vaughan told reporters in Ottawa following the release of his annual report.


"We have a team in place right now that are meeting our legislative requirement to report to Parliament in the spring of 2012 on the next mandated report on the implementation of Kyoto," he said.



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