The head of the United Nations' Climate Change Secretariat today welcomed news that the US Senate has voted in favour of outlining an emissions trading system for industry, power generators and transport.
Speaking at the UN climate change talks in Bali today, Yvo de Boer said that yesterday's Washington Senate committee vote of 11-8 to investigate a new cap and trade scheme was, "a very encouraging sign from the United States."
However, US chief climate negotiator, Harlan Watson, told reporters in Bali, "It will not alter our position here."
Mr Watson went on to add that Washington was pursuing its own path to emissions reductions by inviting the larger economies to Hawaii, next month for climate change talks. The upcoming Honolulu summit will continue the talks that began in September at the White House.
Elsewhere in Bali this morning, Oxfam paraded their polar bears to the world's media and policymakers. In addition to encircling the bemused conference goers on a tandem bicycle, the bears branded banners demanding that the assembled power players 'Fight Climate Poverty' and 'Save the Humans Too'.
In other Bali related news, new Australian Prime Minister, Kevin Rudd, has offered his services as a negotiator between China and the West. China is on the verge of becoming the world's biggest emitter of carbon dioxide and is not currently bound to any emissions caps under the Kyoto Agreement.
published: 18:35 - 6 December 2007