Senior G77 members protest steps to change Kyoto pact

Senior G77 members walked out of a meeting during climate talks in the Thai capital saying they would not discuss a future without the Kyoto Protocol climate pact, delegates said on Wednesday.

South Africa’s lead negotiator, China and OPEC countries left the informal session late on Tuesday that was discussing the shape of new climate agreement that would bind all nations in the fight against climate change.

Tensions have been rising during marathon U.N. climate talks in Bangkok that end on Friday over accusations rich nations are trying to kill off Kyoto, which binds 37 industrialized nations to emissions targets during its 2008-12 first commitment period.

The question negotiators are wrestling with is whether to extend Kyoto into a second commitment period from 2013, amend the pact or create a new one, a step many developing nations resist.

“The G77 is extremely concerned with the notion that there is a clear intention being shown that developed countries, who are party to the Kyoto Protocol, of not agreeing to new targets for the second commitment period of the Kyoto Protocol,” said Alf Wills, spokesman and lead negotiator for South Africa in the G77 of developing nations.

“The G77 rejects the notion and proposal to collapse or ‘cut and paste the good parts of the Kyoto Protocol’ (one wonders what the bad parts are) into a new single legal instrument under the Convention,” Wills said in an email to Reuters, referring to the U.N. Framework Convention on Climate Change.

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