February 28, 2007
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Global Climate Change Digest
A Guide to Information on Greenhouse Gases and Ozone Depletion
Published July 1988 through June 1999
FROM VOLUME 10, NUMBER 8, AUGUST 1997
Clinton kicked off his campaign to raise public awareness of the climate
change issue, announced at the Rio + 5 meeting of the United
Nations in June 1997, with a July 24 round table discussion at the White
house with several top scientists. A series of regional meetings and other
acti vities will lead to the December meeting in Kyoto on the Climate
Convention. A conference at the White House is planned for early October,
following which the Administration is expected to announce specific
emission restrictions it will push for at Kyoto. (See feature article in
Global Environ. Change Rep., pp. 1-3, Aug. 8, 1997; Intl.
Environ. Rptr., p. 757, Aug. 6.)
The day following the start of the Clinton campaign, the United States
Senate unanimously approved a resolution stating that the U.S. should not
sign an agreement to limit emissions after 2000 unless developing nations
commit to specified, timed limits as well. It does not say that those
limits should be the same as the ones applied to industrialized countries.
The resolution expresses concern that emission controls could harm the
U.S. economy, and calls for an economic analysis of the proposals the
Administration will submit in Kyoto. (See Intl. Environ. Rptr.,
pp. 752-753, Aug. 6; pp. 714-715, July 23.)
At a July 10 Senate hearing, scientists with diverging opinions on the
human impact on climate generally agreed that the U.S. should take modest
measures to limit greenhouse gas emissions. (See Intl. Environ. Rptr.,
p. 721, July 23, 1997.)
Extensive material relating to both the Clinton campaign and the Senate
resolution as well as recent House and Senate hearings can be found in
August listings of Global Change Electronic Edition (http://www.globalchange.org/).
In Newsweek (p. 57, July 14, 1997), R.J. Samuelson predicts
global warming to become a "gushing source of national hypocrisy,"
since taking it seriously is politically correct, but doing anything about
it would be political suicide.
In a Washington Times commentary (July 17, 1997, p. A17), the
chair of the Media Research Center argues that media bias has
oversimplified the issue, turning it into the do-gooder environmentalists
vs. the greedy captains of industry.
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