2008年7月8日 星期二

The G8 summit 2008

The G8 summit

A world of troubles to tackle

Jul 7th 2008 | TOYAKO
From Economist.com

The G8 leaders, meeting in Japan, have many challenges but few tools


THE leaders of the G8 group of rich countries kicked off three days of annual summitry hosted by Japan in Toyako on the northern island of Hokkaido on Monday July 7th. The remoteness of the venue—a bubble-era resort hotel overlooking Lake Toya—and an overwhelming police presence around the summit and Japan’s main cities appear to have prevented the scale of anti-globalisation protests and street violence that have disrupted recent gatherings of the world’s self-appointed steering group, including last year’s summit at Heiligendamm in Germany. But even without the protests, the leaders of Britain, France, Germany, Italy, Canada, the United States, Japan and Russia, half of them new to their job, will be aware of how much the world has changed since Heiligendamm.

At last year’s summit the price of oil was at less than half today’s $140 a barrel. The world price of rice and other grains gave few signs of doubling, threatening political stability in Africa and Asia and mocking earlier G8 commitments to reducing global poverty. Meanwhile, mention then of structured investment vehicles or Northern Rock to a G8 leader would have been met with a blank stare.

Pricey oil, the food crisis and the credit crunch: the new challenges either have their roots beyond the G8, or have quickly raced across borders. Either way, they highlight how the G8’s supposed goals work increasingly at cross-purposes. The call for lower fuel prices stands at odds with energy efficiency, cutting carbon dependence and tackling climate change—as does the drive against nuclear proliferation. Emphasising biofuels means less land for food production, leading to higher prices and hungry bellies. The desire of rich countries to avoid recession raises questions about their resolve to nip inflation. The rich-country club (plus Russia), representing a minority of the world’s population, appears ill-equipped for the challenges.

As host, Japan’s prime minister, Yasuo Fukuda, is determined to make the best of the contradictions. The summit’s opening day addresses poverty and higher food prices in Africa, with seven African national leaders invited. Japanese officials, among others, have floated the idea of a grain stockpile that might act as a buffer against volatile prices. Britain’s prime minister, Gordon Brown, proposes a doubling of food production in Africa. Ban Ki-moon, the UN secretary general, says that high food prices are "turning back the clock on development gains". But talk is cheap: non-government organisations give warning that even development goals agreed by the G8 just three years ago at Gleneagles in Scotland appear to be slipping. The head of the Asian Development Bank points out that food is not solely an African challenge: over 1 billion Asians spend some three-fifths of their income on food.

On the summit’s second day, the G8 leaders huddle informally, but on the third the “outreach” championed by Japan continues with China, India, Brazil, Mexico, Indonesia, Australia South Africa and South Korea all invited to discuss carbon emissions and global warming. That brings together the world’s biggest emitters, but few concrete decisions are likely: after all, a deal to replace the Kyoto protocol, which expires in 2012, is not due until a UN conference in Copenhagen at the end of 2009. Still, China and India might agree to make bigger verbal commitments to cutting emissions—provided the West makes money and technology available.

Until now, these two giants have argued that big cuts were an inequitable way to deal with a carbon-dioxide concentration in the atmosphere that was not of their making, but because of earlier industrialisation. Yet the United States is reluctant to adopt emissions targets without commitments from the newest industrialisers. Ahead of the summit George Bush promised to be “constructive” on climate change. If there is any sign of progress on this matter, some G8 leaders may push for something firmer than the Heiligendamm promise to “consider seriously” cutting emissions by half by 2050.

These, then, are the global challenges that the G8’s leaders will attempt to address (while also finding time to condemn Zimbabwe’s Robert Mugabe and gauge progress on North Korea’s denuclearisation). If only electorates were behind them. President Nicolas Sarkozy of France has yet to regain the popularity and authority that propelled him to office. Mr Bush, unpopular at home, is nearing the end of his term. Mr Fukuda will possibly not be around in a year’s time, with Mr Brown’s future only a little less assured. Popular restiveness against national leaders, even if it is not allowed to show itself in Toyako, puts the G8’s goals in even greater question.

温室ガス 2050年に半減、世界目標化


記 念撮影のため、サミットテラスに上がる(左から)ブッシュ米大統領、ベルルスコーニ伊首相、メルケル独首相、ブラウン英首相、福田首相、ハーパー・カナダ 首相、サルコジ仏大統領、メドベージェフ・ロシア大統領、バローゾEU欧州委員長=8日午後0時23分、北海道洞爺湖町、代表撮影 表2日目(8日)のポイント

  北海道洞爺湖サミット(主要国首脳会議)2日目の8日、主要8カ国(G8)は温室効果ガスの「2050年までの排出量半減」という長期目標について、G8 だけでなく、すべての国での共有を目指すことで一致した。こうした方針や食糧価格高騰への対応などを盛り込んだ首脳宣言を採択した。(村山祐介)

 G8は「50年半減」を新興国を巻き込んで実現する姿勢を見せ、9日には主要排出国会議(MEM)の首脳会合を中国やインドなど8カ国と開く。焦 点は新興国側の同意取り付けに移るが、中印など新興5カ国首脳は8日声明を出し、「世界の国々の平等な発展が保証されなければならない」と早くもクギをさ した。

 8日の首脳宣言では、温暖化対策で最大の焦点となった世界全体の長期目標について「2050年までに少なくとも50%の削減を達成する目標という ビジョンを、国連気候変動枠組み条約の全締約国と共有し、同条約にもとづく交渉でその目標を検討、採択を求める」と明記。この目標について「世界全体、特 にすべての主要経済国の貢献によってのみ対応できることを認識する」と強調した。枠組み条約には国連のほぼすべての加盟国が参加している。


 2020~30年ごろをめどとする中期目標についても、「排出量の絶対的削減を達成するため、野心的な中期の国別総量目標を実施する」と明記。京 都議定書に続く13年以降の国際枠組みで、「拘束される形で、すべての主要経済国が意味ある(気候変動の)緩和の行動をコミットする必要がある」とした。



 昨年のサミットでは日本やEUなどが提案した「50年半減」を「真剣に検討する」ことで一致。日本は洞爺湖での合意を目指してきたが、米国はG8だけの 合意には強い難色を示し、中印を含めるよう主張していた。結局、合意は明記しない形で、G8としてすべての国に目標の共有を呼びかけることでまとまった。

 一方、日本が提案した産業部門別のガス削減手法「セクター別アプローチ」については、「各国の排出削減目標を達成する上で、とりわけ有効な手法」と評 価。ガスの大幅削減を実現する革新的技術について、開発に向けた行程表を定める「国際的イニシアチブ」を立ち上げることなども盛り込まれた。


 G8の首脳宣言について、国連の潘基文(パン・ギムン)事務総長は8日、朝日新聞記者との単独会見で「もっと強い言葉が望ましかった」と不満を示 した。一方で、「米国が2050年に半減という目標に加わったことは勇気づけられる」と一定の評価を示し、「始まりとしてはいいのではないか。問題意識は 高まった。私も明日、拡大会合の場でさらに協力を訴える」と語った。(松下佳世)