London: Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva has rejected the call made by US president, George Bush for countries to sign up US-led proposals on climate change.
His point is that an international agreement must come within a UN framework. Though Brazil is considered a key American partner in S.America, according to him, Brasilia was not informed about Washington considering a new negotiating framework ahead of Bush’s announcement.
“The Brazilian position is clear cut, I cannot accept the idea that we have to build another group to discuss the same issues that were taken up in Kyoto and not fulfilled. If the UN has a multilateral forum that makes a democratic decision we should abide by those rules, rather than say that I do not agree with Kyoto and that I will develop another institution,” he explained candidly.
Branding Bush’s approach as “voluntarism,” relying on “coalitions of the willing” pursuing voluntary goals rather than binding commitments hammered out in global institutions, he pointed out that voluntarism cannot and must not override multilateralism.
Undoubtedly, major industrial nations at the G8 summit must be urged to join a new global framework for fighting climate change once the Kyoto Protocol lapses.
The three-day summit of the Group of Eight powers, in Heiligendamm on the German Baltic coast which begins on 6 June, brings together leaders from Britain, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Russia and the United States. Five rapidly developing major economies,namely Brazil, China, India, Mexico and South Africa are also invited as part of a wider grouping.
Lula rebuked Bush for seemingly sidestepping the UN and not taking its global responsibilities more seriously. But he insisted he remained open-minded about talking to Bush. He ended by saying that “If the US is the country that most contributes with greenhouse gases, in the world, it should assume more responsibility to reduce emissions.”