Rio earth talks produce draft deal; Canada blamed for weak words on oceans | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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Rio earth talks produce draft deal; Canada blamed for weak words on oceans

OTTAWA - Negotiators for Canada and more than 100 other countries have signed a draft blueprint for sustainable development of the world, but critics say Canada was instrumental in making the plan unduly weak.

After months of trying to boil down proposals, environmental officials at the Rio+20 conference in Brazil this week finally compromised and delivered a 283-point "vision" for leaders and politicians to ratify later this week.

The plan would commit countries to fight climate change with "urgent and ambitious action", increase their aid for developing countries, and work out a global set of long-term sustainable development goals to alleviate poverty and prevent global warming.

But critics say the draft is weak on timelines and firm commitments, and lacks heft when it comes to overseeing the state of the world's oceans.

They blame Canada, in part, for arguing against a new agreement that would better protect the biodiversity of the high seas, where no country has any firm control.

A spokesman for Environment Minister Peter Kent says Canada is already part of an ad hoc process to protect the high seas, and creating another agreement would duplicate efforts.

News from © The Canadian Press, 2012
The Canadian Press

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