Monday, November 06, 2006

Annual U.N. Climate Change Conference in Nairobi, Kenya

Approximately 5,000 delegates representing 189 countries are meeting in Nairobi, Kenya at the annual U.N. Climate Conference for the next two weeks to preview the latest scientific findings on a warming world. The 1997 Kyoto Protocol, an annex to the 1992 U.N. climate-change treaty, requires 35 industrialized countries to reduce those emissions by 5 percent below 1990 levels by 2012. The conference will continue talks on what kind of emissions targets and timetables should follow 2012.

Signs of global warming are the dramatic ice meltings in the Arctic and Greenland's ice mass. Japan, Spain and other Kyoto signatories have registered emissions increases since 1990. A recent British government study predicts the damage from unabated climate change will eventually cost between 5 percent and 20 percent of global gross domestic product each year. A U.N. Environment Program report issued at the conference concluded that Africa' vulnerability to climate change was "even more acute" than prviously estimated.

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