US not shamed about being Kyoto Protocol outsider

Updated: 2008-01-31 15:54

HONOLULU, THE UNITED STATES -- The Bush administration is not ashamed of being the only developed nation staying out of the Kyoto protocol and the accusation that it is resisting mandatory pollution reduction goals is not "accurate", a US official said here Wednesday.

"The United States tagged as unwilling to make mandatory commitments is not accurate," Boyden Gray, the US special envoy to the European Union, told reporters at a press briefing here.

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Commenting on EU's commitment to cut greenhouse emissions, Gray said the US government is doing more "aggressively" in environment protection, citing the energy bill signed by President George W. Bush last month.

The bill mandates the first major increase in vehicle fuel efficiency standards in over three decades.

Gray said the Bush administration is not shamed about staying away from the Kyoto Protocol, which is a protocol to the international Framework Convention on Climate Change with the objective of reducing greenhouse gases that cause climate change.

It was agreed on Dec. 11 1997 at the 3rd Conference of the Parties to the treaty when they met in Kyoto, Japan and entered into force on Feb. 16 2005.

The United States is the only developed country in the world that still stays away from the protocol and it is still resisting to impose mandatory greenhouse gas emission targets while the Europeans have already embraced the idea.

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