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Global Climate Change Digest

A Guide to Information on Greenhouse Gases and Ozone Depletion
Published July 1988 through June 1999



Item #d93jul73

The White House Conference on Global Climate Change held in June provided the first public input for a new National Action Plan being prepared by the Clinton Administration. The plan is intended to reduce U.S. CO2 emissions to 1990 levels by the year 2000. The Administration wants to present the plan at the August 16-17 meeting of signatories to the U.N. Framework Convention on Climate Change in Geneva, although many of the participants in the process question whether a detailed plan can be developed so soon. The role of "joint implementation" in the plan, whereby the U.S. can take credit for emission reductions or offsets achieved by privately or government-supported activities in other countries, is receiving considerable attention. The Administration has not taken a firm position on the issue so far.

In early June, President Clinton abandoned his proposal for a broad-based energy tax, although some form of it may emerge from House-Senate negotiations on his budget legislation. The absence of such a tax is expected to make the U.S. emissions reductions harder to achieve. (See Reports for one estimate of the impact of the tax on CO2 emissions.)

On June 21, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency released for public review a draft document summarizing U.S. emissions and sinks of greenhouse gases. (See Reports.) The information will be used in developing the National Action Plan.

For discussion on the White House conference and joint implementation see Intl. Environ. Rptr. (pp. 433-434, June 16), Environ. Rptr. Curr. Devel. (pp. 317-318, June 18; pp. 362-363, June 25), Inside EPA (p. 12, June 18; p. 12, July 9), Global Environ. Change Rep. (p. 3, June 24).

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