UN: Emission pledges fall short of climate target

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U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon called on countries to make good on their pledges and to further the negotiations in Cancun.

“There is no time to waste,” Ban said in a statement. “By closing the gap between the science and current ambition levels, we can seize the opportunity to usher in a new era of low-carbon prosperity and sustainable development for all.”

The takeover of the U.S. House of Representatives by Republicans, many of whom dismiss strong scientific evidence of human-caused warming, all but rules out U.S. action for at least two years.

Cancun negotiators hope at least for agreement on a “green fund” to disburse aid that developed countries promised at Copenhagen _ $100 billion a year by 2020 _ for developing countries to adapt to a changing climate by building seawalls, shifting farming patterns, and installing clean energy sources.

The developing world hopes, too, for better terms for transferring patented green technology from richer nations. In a third area, delegates aim to make progress on the complex issue of compensating poorer nations for protecting their forests, key to the planet’s ability to absorb carbon dioxide.

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