Earth Summit

Part of Oral Answers to Questions — Environment – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 17th June 1992.

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Photo of Michael Howard Michael Howard Secretary of State for Environment 12:00 am, 17th June 1992

We certainly played a part in reaching a position that enabled the United States to sign the climate change convention. As the United States is responsible for 25 per cent. of the world's carbon dioxide emissions, it was essential that it signed up to that treaty. The United States took a different view about the biodiversity treaty, but it has agreed to take part in the processes under that treaty. Nevertheless, I hope that it will be possible for the United States to sign up to that convention in due course. After very protracted negotiations we were able to reach an agreement on forests—not a convention as we had hoped, but an agreement that holds open the possibility of moving towards a convention. We shall vigorously pursue the possibilities of reviewing the agreement in that way.