THE WHITE HOUSE
Office of the Press Secretary
STATEMENT BY THE PRESS SECRETARY
Early today in Buenos Aires, representatives of more than 160 countries adopted a plan of action for moving forward to address the challenge of global warming. The countries agreed to settle by the end of 2000 a number of key issues arising from last year's historic Kyoto Protocol.
The Buenos Aires conference achieved significant progress toward completing the unfinished business of Kyoto. Thanks to strong leadership from the United States, and our chief negotiator, Under Secretary of State Stuart E. Eizenstat, the action plan sets a firm deadline for adopting rules on emissions trading and other market-based tools agreed to in Kyoto that will enable us to meet our ambitious environmental targets faster and at less cost.
The Buenos Aires conference also was marked by a new spirit of engagement on the part of developing countries. Argentina became the first developing country to voluntarily commit to taking on a binding greenhouse gas emissions target. Kazakstan announced that it planned to do so as well.
The United States signed the Kyoto Protocol on Thursday at the United Nations, reaffirming our commitment to work with other countries to resolve the many outstanding issues. President Clinton has stated that he will not submit the Protocol to the U.S. Senate without the meaningful participation of key developing countries.
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