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Bush's Climate Plan Faces G-8 Opposition

STEVE INSKEEP, host:

President Bush says he wants to be a world leader on an issue that his administration was accused of ignoring. The issue is climate change, and NPR's Elizabeth Shogren has more.

ELIZABETH SHOGREN: President Bush says by the time he leaves office he wants to set a long-term global goal for reducing the greenhouse gas emissions that are causing climate change.

President GEORGE W. BUSH: The United States would convene a series of meetings of nations that produced most greenhouse gas emissions, including nations with rapidly growing economies like India and China.

SHOGREN: During a speech in Washington yesterday, the president said he wants each country to set its own target for cutting emissions. Democratic Senator Barbara Boxer heads the Senate Environment Committee. She says the president's announcement gives her hope.

Senator BARBARA BOXER (Democrat, California): I view this as finally some movement. This is good news. That doesn't mean we're not going to have some very large disagreements, but there are things that we can do right now to make a real difference.

SHOGREN: For example, she says the government could increase mileage standards for cars. But environmentalists were skeptical. They say the president's plan is vague and would distract from a more vigorous international effort to fight climate change.

Elizabeth Shogren, NPR News, Washington. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

Elizabeth Shogren is an NPR News Science Desk correspondent focused on covering environment and energy issues and news.
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