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Industry News

Australia Will Not Ratify Kyoto Because of Coal

LCG, June 5, 2002--Australia, as the world's largest producer of coal, will not ratify the Kyoto protocol because it says it needs to protect its coal industry.

Japan ratified the Kyoto Protocol on Tuesday, and although Australia signed the treaty in February, the country refused to ratify it today.

About 50 countries support the 1997 treaty, which is an attempt to limit emissions which increasingly compelling evidence suggests are responsible for global climate change. Industrialized nations would have to limit emissions by an average of five percent by 2012 from those of 1990.

Australia was given the right to increase its emissions by 8 percent under Kyoto but still faces a lot of pressure from the mining and other coal-related industries and worries that it will hurt employment and its economy by signing the treaty.

Australian Prime Minister John Howard also asserted that Kyoto would not work so long as developing nations and the United States, the world's biggest polluter, were not included in the treaty.

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