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From the US, a new pledge on climate change

Republican presidential hopeful John McCain has outlined his plan, which includes a mandatory cap on emissions for the United States, with or without Chinese cooperation. chinadialogue publishes his speech in full.

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John McCain, a United States senator from Arizona and the presumptive Republican Party nominee for president in the November 2008 election, made a major speech on Monday outlining his proposals for a new US climate-change policy.

The remarks, delivered during a visit to a wind power company in Portland, Oregon, were targeted to emphasise the significant differences in environmental policy between McCain and the Republican president George W Bush, who rejected the Kyoto Protocol soon after taking office in 2001.

Throughout his two terms in office, Bush has resisted calls for binding curbs on greenhouse-gas emissions on the ground they would hurt the US economy. In contrast, McCain calls for a mandatory limit on greenhouse-gas emissions. While he favours binding curbs, however, McCain’s target for reducing emissions – 60% below 1990 levels by 2050 – is lower than those proposed by either of the Democratic presidential candidates. Senators Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama have suggested cutting emissions by 80% in the same time-frame.

Political commentators have noted that in the prepared text of McCain’s remarks, which was circulated among reporters, the senator called for punitive tariffs against China and India if they evaded international standards on emissions. However, these remarks were omitted in the speech that McCain delivered in Oregon. In the speech, published by chinadialogue below, McCain says gaining the cooperation of China is one of America’s “greatest difficulties.” He continues: “If the efforts to negotiate an international solution that includes China and India do not succeed, we still have an obligation to act.”


Thank you all very much.

I appreciate the hospitality of Vestas Wind Technology. Today is a kind of test run for the company. They've got wind technicians here, wind studies, and all these wind turbines, but there's no wind. So now I know why they asked me to come give a speech.

Every day, when there are no reporters and cameras around to draw attention to it, this company and others like it are doing important work. And what we see here is just a glimpse of much bigger things to come. Wind power is one of many alternative energy sources that are changing our economy for the better. And one day they will change our economy forever.

Wind is a clean and predictable source of energy, and about as renewable as anything on earth. Along with solar power, fuel-cell technology, cleaner burning fuels and other new energy sources, wind power will bring America closer to energy independence. Our economy depends upon clean and affordable alternatives to fossil fuels, and so, in many ways, does our security. A large share of the world's oil reserves is controlled by foreign powers that do not have our interests at heart. And as our reliance on oil passes away, their power will vanish with it.

In the coming weeks, I intend to address many of the great challenges that America's energy policies must meet. When we debate energy bills in Washington, it should be more than a competition among industries for special favors, subsidies, and tax breaks. In the Congress, we need to send the special interests on their way -- without their favors and subsidies. We need to draw on the best ideas of both parties, and on all the resources a free market can provide. We need to keep our eyes on big goals in energy policy, the serious dangers, and the common interests of the American people.

Today I'd like to focus on just one of those challenges, and among environmental dangers it is surely the most serious of all. Whether we call it "climate change" or "global warming," in the end we're all left with the same set of facts. The facts of global warming demand our urgent attention, especially in Washington. Good stewardship, prudence, and simple commonsense demand that we to act meet the challenge, and act quickly.

Some of the most compelling evidence of global warming comes to us from NASA. No longer do we need to rely on guesswork and computer modeling, because satellite images reveal a dramatic disappearance of glaciers, Antarctic ice shelves and polar ice sheets. And I've seen some of this evidence up close. A few years ago I traveled to the area of Svalbard, Norway, a group of islands in the Arctic Ocean. I was shown the southernmost point where a glacier had reached twenty years earlier. From there, we had to venture northward up the fjord to see where that same glacier ends today -- because all the rest has melted. On a trip to Alaska, I heard about a national park visitor's center that was built to offer a picture-perfect view of a large glacier. Problem is, the glacier is gone. A work of nature that took ages to form had melted away in a matter of decades.

Our scientists have also seen and measured reduced snowpack, with earlier runoffs in the Pacific Northwest and elsewhere. We have seen sustained drought in the Southwest, and across the world average temperatures that seem to reach new records every few years. We have seen a higher incidence of extreme weather events. In the frozen wilds of Alaska, the Arctic, Antarctic, and elsewhere, wildlife biologists have noted sudden changes in animal migration patterns, a loss of their habitat, a rise in sea levels. And you would think that if the polar bears, walruses, and sea birds have the good sense to respond to new conditions and new dangers, then humanity can respond as well.

We have many advantages in the fight against global warming, but time is not one of them. Instead of idly debating the precise extent of global warming, or the precise timeline of global warming, we need to deal with the central facts of rising temperatures, rising waters, and all the endless troubles that global warming will bring. We stand warned by serious and credible scientists across the world that time is short and the dangers are great. The most relevant question now is whether our own government is equal to the challenge.

There are vital measures we can take in the short term, even as we focus on long-term policies to mitigate the effects of global warming. In the years ahead, we are likely to see reduced water supplies, more forest fires than in previous decades, changes in crop production, more heat waves afflicting our cities and a greater intensity in storms. Each one of these consequences of climate change will require policies to protect our citizens, especially those most vulnerable to violent weather. Each one will require new precautions in the repair and construction of our roads, bridges, railways, seawalls and other infrastructure. Some state and local governments have already begun their planning and preparation for extreme events and other impacts of climate change. The federal government can help them in many ways, above all by coordinating their efforts, and I am committed to providing that support.

To lead in this effort, however, our government must strike at the source of the problem -- with reforms that only Congress can enact and the president can sign. We know that greenhouse gasses are heavily implicated as a cause of climate change. And we know that among all greenhouse gasses, the worst by far is the carbon-dioxide that results from fossil-fuel combustion. Yet for all the good work of entrepreneurs and inventors in finding cleaner and better technologies, the fundamental incentives of the market are still on the side of carbon-based energy. This has to change before we can make the decisive shift away from fossil fuels.

For the market to do more, government must do more by opening new paths of invention and ingenuity. And we must do this in a way that gives American businesses new incentives and new rewards to seek, instead of just giving them new taxes to pay and new orders to follow. The most direct way to achieve this is through a system that sets clear limits on all greenhouse gases, while also allowing the sale of rights to excess emissions. And this is the proposal I will submit to the Congress if I am elected president -- a cap-and-trade system to change the dynamic of our energy economy.

As a program under the Clean Air Act, the cap-and-trade system achieved enormous success in ridding the air of acid rain. And the same approach that brought a decline in sulfur dioxide emissions can have an equally dramatic and permanent effect on carbon emissions. Instantly, automakers, coal companies, power plants, and every other enterprise in America would have an incentive to reduce carbon emissions, because when they go under those limits they can sell the balance of permitted emissions for cash. As never before, the market would reward any person or company that seeks to invent, improve, or acquire alternatives to carbon-based energy. It is very hard to picture venture capitalists, corporate planners, small businesses and environmentalists all working to the same good purpose. But such cooperation is actually possible in the case of climate change, and this reform will set it in motion.

The people of this country have a genius for adapting, solving problems, and inventing new and better ways to accomplish our goals. But the federal government can't just summon those talents by command -- only the free market can draw them out. A cap-and-trade policy will send a signal that will be heard and welcomed all across the American economy. Those who want clean coal technology, more wind and solar, nuclear power, biomass and bio-fuels will have their opportunity through a new market that rewards those and other innovations in clean energy. The market will evolve, too, by requiring sensible reductions in greenhouse gases, but also by allowing full flexibility in how industry meets that requirement. Entrepreneurs and firms will know which energy investments they should make. And the highest rewards will go to those who make the smartest, safest, most responsible choices. A cap-and-trade reform will also create a profitable opportunity for rural America to receive market-based payments -- instead of government subsidies -- for the conservation practices that store carbon in the soils of our nation's farms.

We will cap emissions according to specific goals, measuring progress by reference to past carbon emissions. By the year 2012, we will seek a return to 2005 levels of emission, by 2020, a return to 1990 levels, and so on until we have achieved at least a reduction of sixty percent below 1990 levels by the year 2050. In the course of time, it may be that new ideas and technologies will come along that we can hardly imagine today, allowing all industries to change with a speed that will surprise us. More likely, however, there will be some companies that need extra emissions rights, and they will be able to buy them. The system to meet these targets and timetables will give these companies extra time to adapt -- and that is good economic policy. It is also a matter of simple fairness, because the cap-and-trade system will create jobs, improve livelihoods, and strengthen futures across our country.

The goal in all of this is to assure an energy supply that is safe, secure, diverse, and domestic. And in pursuit of these objectives, we cannot afford to take economic growth and job creation for granted. A strong and growing economy is essential to all of our goals, and especially the goal of finding alternatives to carbon-based technology. We want to turn the American economy toward cleaner and safer energy sources. And you can't achieve that by imposing costs that the American economy cannot sustain.

As part of my cap-and-trade incentives, I will also propose to include the purchase of offsets from those outside the scope of the trading system. This will broaden the array of rewards for reduced emissions, while also lowering the costs of compliance with our new emissions standards. Through the sale of offsets -- and with strict standards to assure that reductions are real -- our agricultural sector alone can provide as much as forty percent of the overall reductions we will require in greenhouse gas emissions. And in the short term, farmers and ranchers can do it in some of the most cost-effective ways.

Over time, an increasing fraction of permits for emissions could be supplied by auction, yielding federal revenues that can be put to good use. Under my plan, we will apply these and other federal funds to help build the infrastructure of a post-carbon economy. We will support projects to advance technologies that capture and store carbon emissions. We will assist in transmitting wind- and solar-generated power from states that have them to states that need them. We will add to current federal efforts to develop promising technologies, such as plug-ins, hybrids, flex-fuel vehicles, and hydrogen-powered cars and trucks. We will also establish clear standards in government-funded research, to make sure that funding is effective and focused on the right goals.

And to create greater demand for the best technologies and practices in energy conservation, we will use the purchasing power of the United States government. Our government can hardly expect citizens and private businesses to adopt or invest in low-carbon technologies when it doesn't always hold itself to the same standard. We need to set a better example in Washington, by consistently applying the best environmental standards to every purchase our government makes.

As we move toward all of these goals, and over time put the age of fossil fuels behind us, we must consider every alternative source of power, and that includes nuclear power. When our cap-and-trade policy is in place, there will be a sudden and sustained pursuit in the market for new investment opportunities in low-emission fuel sources. And here we have a known, proven energy source that requires exactly zero emissions. We have 104 nuclear reactors in our country, generating about twenty percent of our electricity. These reactors alone spare the atmosphere from about 700 million metric tons of carbon dioxide that would otherwise be released every year. That's the annual equivalent of nearly all emissions from all the cars we drive in America. Europe, for its part, has 197 reactors in operation, and nations including France and Belgium derive more than half their electricity from nuclear power. Those good practices contribute to the more than two billion metric tons of carbon dioxide avoided every year, worldwide, because of nuclear energy. It doesn't take a leap in logic to conclude that if we want to arrest global warming, then nuclear energy is a powerful ally in that cause.

In a cap-and-trade energy economy, the cost of building new reactors will be less prohibitive. The incentives to invest in a mature, zero-emissions technology will be stronger. New research and innovation will help the industry to overcome the well known drawbacks to nuclear power, such as the transport and storage of waste. And our government can help in these efforts. We can support research to extend the use of existing plants. Above all, we must make certain that every plant in America is safe from the designs of terrorists. And when all of this is assured, it will be time again to expand our use of one of the cleanest, safest, and most reliable sources of energy on earth.

For all of the last century, the profit motive basically led in one direction -- toward machines, methods, and industries that used oil and gas. Enormous good came from that industrial growth, and we are all the beneficiaries of the national prosperity it built. But there were costs we weren't counting, and often hardly noticed. And these terrible costs have added up now, in the atmosphere, in the oceans, and all across the natural world. They are no longer tenable, sustainable, or defensible. And what better way to correct past errors than to turn the creative energies of the free market in the other direction? Under the cap-and-trade system, this can happen. In all its power, the profit motive will suddenly begin to shift and point the other way toward cleaner fuels, wiser ways, and a healthier planet.

As a nation, we make our own environmental plans and our own resolutions.  But working with other nations to arrest climate change can be an even tougher proposition.  One of the greatest difficulties is to gain the cooperation of China.  That nation today is dealing with a catastrophic earthquake and the loss of thousands of citizens, including many children and students.  The United States government has offered to help in any way possible, and all of us hope that rescuers will be able to save more lives at a terrible time for the people of the Sichuan Province.

In addressing the problem of climate change, cooperation from the government of China will be essential.  China, India, and other developing economic powers in particular are among the greatest contributors to global warming today – increasing carbon emissions at a furious pace – and they are not receptive to international standards.  Nor do they think that we in the industrialized world are in any position to preach the good news of carbon-emission control. We made most of our contributions to global warming before anyone knew about global warming.

This set of facts and perceived self-interests proved the undoing of the Kyoto Protocols. As president, I will have to deal with the same set of facts. I will not shirk the mantle of leadership that the United States bears. I will not permit eight long years to pass without serious action on serious challenges. I will not accept the same dead-end of failed diplomacy that claimed Kyoto. The United States will lead and will lead with a different approach -- an approach that speaks to the interests and obligations of every nation.

Shared dangers mean shared duties, and global problems require global cooperation. The United States and our friends in Europe cannot alone deal with the threat of global warming. No nation should be exempted from its obligations. And least of all should we make exceptions for the very countries that are accelerating carbon emissions while the rest of us seek to reduce emissions. If we are going to establish meaningful environmental protocols, then they must include the two nations that have the potential to pollute the air faster, and in greater annual volume, than any nation ever in history.

At the same time, we will continue in good faith to negotiate with China and other nations to enact the standards and controls that are in the interest of every nation -- whatever their stage of economic development. And America can take the lead in offering these developing nations the low-carbon technologies that we will make and they will need. One good idea or invention to reduce carbon emissions is worth a thousand finely crafted proposals at a conference table. And the governments of these developing economic powers will soon recognize, as America is beginning to do, their urgent need for cleaner-burning fuels and safer sources of energy.

If the efforts to negotiate an international solution that includes China and India do not succeed, we still have an obligation to act.

In my approach to global climate-control efforts, we will apply the principle of equal treatment. We will apply the same environmental standards to industries in China, India, and elsewhere that we apply to our own industries. And if industrializing countries seek an economic advantage by evading those standards, I would work with the European Union and other like-minded governments that plan to address the global warming problem to develop effective diplomacy, effect a transfer of technology, or other means to engage those countries that decline to enact a similar cap.

For all of its historical disregard of environmental standards, it cannot have escaped the attention of the Chinese regime that China's skies are dangerously polluted, its beautiful rivers are dying, its grasslands vanishing, its coastlines receding, and its own glaciers melting. We know many of these signs from our own experience -- from environmental lessons learned the hard way. And today, all the world knows that they are the signs of even greater trouble to come. Pressing on blindly with uncontrolled carbon emissions is in no one's interest, especially China's. And the rest of the world stands ready to help.

Like other environmental challenges -- only more so -- global warming presents a test of foresight, of political courage, and of the unselfish concern that one generation owes to the next. We need to think straight about the dangers ahead, and to meet the problem with all the resources of human ingenuity at our disposal. We Americans like to say that there is no problem we can't solve, however complicated, and no obstacle we cannot overcome if we meet it together. I believe this about our country. I know this about our country. And now it is time for us to show those qualities once again.

Thank you.

John McCain is a United States senator from Arizona and the presumptive Republican Party nominee for president in the November 2008 elections.

Homepage photo by marcn

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Default avatar
匿名 | Anonymous



I object!

I admit that America is pledging to make a bit step froward, bringing the world a beautiful hope. I appreciate the work the volunteer translators have done. However, I am very much against the statement below. No matter the words is actually in the speech or it is used in the translation version: I don't agree to use chief culprit to refer to developing countries like China but adding a quotation mark when use a similar name to describe developed countries. I also don't think countries like China are amongst the greatest contributors to global warming today. we are not. we may be contributors to tomorrow's global warming while US is the greatest contributor both for today and tomorrow. I don't agree to name "those treaty" as "international standards". They were developed by a small number of nations and are not accepted internationally (US and Europe are only part of "international".) <>. Aturen

Default avatar
匿名 | Anonymous


首先,感谢你们刊发了有关美国气候变化的稿子。 但是,我也对中外对话对这篇文章的处理方法很失望。作为一个读者,我登陆这个网站是想了解中外对话对美国政策的分析。但我读到的却是一篇冗长的讲话全文。John McCain的讲话全文完全可以用一个外部联接来介绍。这种拷贝和粘贴大量从其他来源来的消息的做法引发了对中外对话编辑水平和质量的疑问。我相信,我不是唯一一个发现这一缺点的读者。伦敦的 Andrew


First thank you for publishing an article about the US climate change policy.

However, I am disappointed with the approach given to the article by chinadialogue. As a reader, I visit this site to obtain chinadialogue's analysis of issues. Instead, I find a rambling text of the entire John McCain speech. This information could have been provided as an external link.

The approach of just copying vast chunks of information from other sources gives rise to the question of chinadialogue's editorial qualities.

I am sure I am not the only reader to identify these shortcomings.

Andrew in London

Default avatar
匿名 | Anonymous



Confusing information

I totally agree with the previous comment.

I was confused by who the author of the article was supposed to be. Did McCain write this piece for chinadialogue, as the title suggests?

I searched through this site and found few other articles about US climate change policy. It seems chinadialogue is rather biased to the Republicans.

LA, John

Default avatar
匿名 | Anonymous


有两位读者对这一篇文章的刊发有想法,在此,我来作一点解释,为什么我们要全文刊发John McCain的讲话。在文章的摘要中,已明确说明这是John McCain的讲话而没有说这是他写给本网站的文章。美国的读者当然可以通过一个外部联接来了解这些内容。但是,我们的中国读者可能没有机会来得到这些信息,或者说它们的中文版。发表这篇文章并非表明对共和党有偏袒:我们没有政治联系(或者与美国大选有关的牵连)。但就目前美国执政共和党的政策来说,McCain的讲话是一个政策上的巨大转变,而且我们的中国读者了解它很重要。就气候谈判的紧迫性和美国大选在即, 所有候选人的讲话都会对后京都协议有影响。不管美国大选的结果如何,这些政策的转变现在已经有了影响。谢谢你们的反馈。我希望这能解释我们的做法。(中外对话总编 Isabel)

disappointment and confusion

Two readers have complained about the publication of John McCain's speech,so let me explain why we published it in full. The standfirst clearly explains that it is the text of a speech, not an article written for chinadialogue. American readers, of course, could follow an external link and read the speech in full, butour Chinese readers might not have been able to access it, or might not have been able to read the untranslated text. Publishing the full text of a major statement on climate change by the Republican candidate for president does not imply bias towards the Republicans: we have no political affiliation (or any vote in US elections). But in view of the current Republican administration's policies, the McCain speech represents a significant shift and one that it is important for our Chinese readers to understand. Given the competing timetables of the climate negotiations and the US presidential elections, pre-election statements by all candidates impact the discussions on a post-Kyoto framework. Whatever the final outcome of the US race, these policy shifts have an impact now. Thank you for you feedback. I hope this has explained our thinking. Isabel Hilton (editor)

Default avatar
匿名 | Anonymous



Martin Bunzl
Initiative on Climate and Social Policy,

An important post

I think this is an important post. The fact that all 3 Presidential candidates now support serious U.S. action to limit U.S. greenhouse gasses marks a turning point. The really surprising aspect of McCain's speech is that it calls for this action with or without recprocity from others, including China. I think Obama and Clinton will take the same position. And that sets the stage for the U.S. to (finally) establish its bona fides in this area on the international stage.

Martin Bunzl,
Initiative on Climate and Social Policy,
Rutger University,
New Jersey, USA.

Default avatar
匿名 | Anonymous


"中外对话" 大篇幅的刊发共和党的观点显然就是在偏袒这个政党. 为何你们如此对待John McCain的讲话,而没有提到Barak Obama的政治观点呢?

再者,中外对话哪里全面报道过去年中国政府颁布的《中国应对气候变化国家方案》.也许,你们提到了一些这个方案的信息, 但同John McCain的讲话相比,根本不值得一提.




Chinadialogue is obviously biased in its coverage of Republican viewpoints. Why else would you devote hundreds of words by John McCain but give no coverage of Barak Obama. And where was the in depth coverage of China's National Climate Change Programme which was released last year. A few words, yes, but nothing compared to the recent McCain article. Chinadialogue seems to be joining the ranks of Western broadcasters in its china bashing attitude.

Ba Jin (巴金)in China

Default avatar
匿名 | Anonymous

回复: 偏袒






Re: Biased?

Ba Jin: I think chinadialogue republished John McCain's speech in Chinese because it is very relevant for policy-makers in China, not because of a political affiliation. (Frankly, it seems a bit loony to suggest there is a right-wing bias at chinadialogue! I have seen very little to suggest this...). And more to the point, why is it "China-bashing" to publish McCain's speech? McCain's speech is interesting precisely because of its progressive attitude towards China's participation, or not, in a global deal on climate. I think, frankly, that it may be you who has to adopt a less partisan -- and more international -- perspective on this issue. SL

Default avatar
匿名 | Anonymous


我也希望奥巴马关于气候变化的发言能够发表。这可以将中外对话从亲共和党的指控中解救出来。但更重要的是,麦凯恩的发言严重曲解了中国现在所进行的工作。例如,中国有全球80%的新型清洁煤电站而美国只有1到2个。和欧美电站相比,中国每周都会启动一个新电站,这对中国来说很重要,因为这些电站的效率要比传统的供热电站高20%-30%。 同时能够相应的降低同样比例的二氧化碳排放,即主要温室气体。美国和欧盟其实能够把这项新技术-超临界锅炉应用到他们现有的电站中,而中国却因是老电站不能这样做。第二中国在煤矿甲烷控制程序的发展很快,在清洁发展机制下和联合国及投资银行都有合作。甲烷对温室效应的加剧作用要比主要温室气体二氧化碳高20倍。同时这个项目也能够加强对矿工的安全保障。

大卫 菲克特


I would like to have seen Obama's statement on climate change published as well; this would have saved CD from accusations of pro-Republican bias. However, more important, McCain's speech is badly misinformed about what China is already doing. For example, China has 80% of the world's newest, clean coal power stations while the US has merely one or two prototypes. China is commissioning a new power plant every week and this is important, as these plants are between 20-30% more efficient in thermal terms, reducing CO2 (the main greenhouse gas) per unit of electricity by a similar amount, compared to US or European plant. The US and EU could actually retro-fit this technology (supercritical boilers) to many of their existing power stations, whereas China cannot do this to its older plant.

Second, China has a rapidly growing coal mine methane control programme, working with the UN and investment banks, under the Clean Development Mechanism. Methane is around 20 times more powerful as a greenhouse gas than CO2 and this programme benefits miners' safety, uses a premium fuel which would otherwise cause global warming.

Dave Feickert

Coal mine safety and energy consultant


Default avatar
匿名 | Anonymous


就我对“中外对话”偏袒麦凯恩的评论再补充几句话。到现在尚不清楚为什么“中外对话”登载麦凯恩的环境计划,而早在2007年10月,奥巴马就曾对环境问题发表过有深度的演讲。“中外对话”转载过他的文章吗?很明显,没有。这是奥巴马有关未来清洁能源计划的 链接


What about Obama's plan

Further to my comment on a biased leaning to John McCain. It remains unclear why Chinadialogue prints his plans for the environment when Obama as early as October 2007 made in depth speeches on the subject. Where are the articles on Chinadialogue. Simple answer, nowhere. This is the [link] to Obama's plan for a clean energy future. He acknowledges that "corn ethanol is neither the perfect nor the permanent answer to our energy challenge" and that there are "legitimate economic and ecological concerns" over its use. He talks also about the need for investment in "clean energy sources like wind power and solar power, so that by 2025, America can meet a new standard that will require 25% of all our electricity to come from renewable sources." While McCain mentions clean energy sources he sets out no plan or date. Perhaps Chinadialogue should look at all the candidates and give a balanced report on their views.

Ba Jin (巴金)

Default avatar
匿名 | Anonymous



但有一点,从新闻角度来说,单方面大篇幅地报道McCain 的观点而没有谈及Obama和Clinton的看法,从而分析美国政策的走向。就这一点,中外对话的做法是不合适的。这很不符合西方媒体宣扬的“不偏袒”报道原则。

同时,这种做法也不符合你们倡导的“平衡”报道原则。我非常赞同巴金的一个观点:(如果中外对话总编Isabel Hilton认为中国人有必要来了解美国人的气候政 策,那同样,美国(西方世界)也学需要了解中国的政策。如果中外对话有一个编辑标准的话,那你们去年就很需要全文登载中国的《应对气候变化国家方案〉〉。

中外对话的读者可以通过商道纵横网站来获得中英文版的这个政策。请看:http://syntao.com/Page_Show.asp?Page_ID =4410

From a journalistic perspective

The discussion above is rather interesting. It is reasonable for either side to defend themselves. This is nothing wrong with chinadialogue publishing a proposed US climate change policy, though I am not in the position to comment if this site has any political affiliations.

However, it is inappropriate for the site to publish McCain’s speech in full without discussing proposals by Obama and Clinton as well.
This should be compared to the policies of the current US administration. This partial approach by chinadialogue does not fit well into Western journalistic standards, which aims to be impartial.

I agree to one point raised by Ba Jin.

This site fails to be balanced in its reporting. If chinadialogue editor Isabel Hilton thinks it is necessary for Chinese people to learn about US climate change policy, the approach should be even handed and China’s climate change policy should also be made available for American readers. As such, chinadialogue should have published the full text, in both languages, of China’s National Climate Change Programme which was issued in June, 2007.

However, chinadialogue readers can get the bilingual versions of the programme by visiting the Syntao site: http://syntao.com/Page_Show.asp?Page_ID=4410