SYDNEY, Australia - The leaders of the 21 nations participating in the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) forum, including President Bush, have agreed to pursue a climate change agreement for the period after 2012. Noting that “the world needs to slow, stop, and then reverse the growth of global greenhouse gas emissions,” the leaders agreed to work toward “a long-term aspirational global emissions reduction goal to pave the way for an effective post-2012 international agreement.”
The group, which includes the United States and China, set an APEC-wide goal to reduce energy intensity to 25 percent below 2005 levels by 2030. Energy intensity is the energy used per unit of gross domestic product and is a measure of an economy’s energy efficiency. The group also agreed to establish the Asia-Pacific Network for Energy Technology to strengthen collaboration on energy research.
President Bush also met separately with Australian Prime Minister John Howard, and the two leaders agreed to continue working to address climate change under both bilateral partnerships and through larger international efforts. Australia welcomed the U.S. initiative to launch a series of meetings about future global action on climate change, starting with a meeting in Washington, D.C., at the end of September. Both countries also will participate in the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Indonesia in December, where delegates will work toward a post-2012 climate agreement.