Rich nations to be blamed for global warming: Reports

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London, Dec 2: Ahead of the Bali negotiations on global warming, beginning tomorrow, three devastating new official reports point fingers at rich coutries for rapidly increasing pollution and taking global warming to record levels.

The reports warn that emissions of greenhouse gases and their accumulation in the atmosphere are higher than they have ever been, and unless policies are urgently reversed, it would lead to catastrophic climate change.

The reports-- from three separate UN organisations-- form the strongest and most authoritative condemnation of Western climate policies yet.

The Bali talks are to start discussing a successor to the present agreement under the Kyoto Protocol, which runs out in five years' time, having failed to measure up to the escalating climate crisis. Experts say the negotiations are the world's ''last chance'' to avoid disaster.

The first report, by the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change(UNFCCC), shows that total emissions of greenhouse gases-- mainly carbon dioxide, methane and nitrous oxide-- by the world's 40 industrialised nations have risen to to an all-time high, despite an undertaking to diminish them, the Independent reported.

Pollution by the US, Australia(that have abjured the Kyoto Protocol), China, India and former Eastern Bloc countries has risen.

The second report, by the World Meteorological Organisation(WMO), concludes that concentrations of both carbon dioxide and nitrous oxide in the atmosphere have reached record levels, causing the planet to heat up faster than ever before.

The third report, the United Nations Development Programme's Human Development Report, said,''If the next 15 years of emissions follow the linear trend of the past 15, dangerous climate change will become unavoidable.

''Political action continues to fall far short of the minimum needed to resolve the climate change problem. The gap between scientific evidence and political response remains large.'' Environmentalists hope that the talks that start tomorrow in Bali will usher in something much better, before it is too late.

UNI

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