September 3, 2002 – The Kyoto Protocol lives. Commitments by the Prime Ministers of Russia and Canada at the Earth Summit in Johannesburg mean the only international treaty that cuts the emissions causing dangerous climate change will enter into force, possibly by the end of this year [1].

Kate Hampton, Friends of the Earth’s International Climate Coordinator said:

“This is marvellous news! Russia and Canada have resisted intense US pressure. The Russian promise alone means Kyoto will be a reality. The global villain, George ‘W’ Bush has been foiled again. This will put massive pressure on Australia and the US to reverse their previous positions and ratify Kyoto themselves. But soon all nations will need to go beyond Kyoto and agree fair and tough long term targets, if climate change is to be stopped.”

[1] Speaking at the UN World Summit on Sustainable Development in Johannesburg yesterday, the Russian Prime Minister, Mr Mikhail Kasyanov said: “We consider that ratification will take place in the very nearest future” and Canadian Prime Minister, Jean Chretien said:

“We are finalising a plan of implementation that will permit us to achieve the objectives of the Kyoto Accord…..before the end of the year, the Canadian Parliament will be asked to vote on the ratification of the Kyoto Accord”.

Kate Hampton +27 72 (0) 401 5388
Roger Higman +44 (0) 20 7566 1661 (m) +44 (0) 7780 661 807