Skip to comments.Illarionov Attacks Britain, Vows to Bury Kyoto
Posted on 07/11/2004 7:31:53 PM PDT by nypokerface
President Vladimir Putin's personal adviser on all things economic last week accused British Prime Minister Tony Blair's government of declaring "all-out and total war on Russia" and using "bribes, blackmail and murder threats" to force it to ratify the Kyoto Protocol.
In a six-hour diatribe, Andrei Illarionov accused visiting Blair adviser Sir David King, the British government's top scientist, of trying, through pressure from Blair's office and through Foreign Secretary Jack Straw personally, to hijack a two-day conference on the global environmental treaty at the Russian Academy of Sciences.
"During the past year [the British] have used bribes, blackmail and murder threats to put pressure on Russia, which shows how desperate their case is," Illarionov said without elaborating. "This has not been in the realm of the press, but it had to come out after Sir David King's behavior at the conference," he said.
King filibustered the conference for four hours in an effort to block opponents of the protocol from presenting their findings, Illarionov said.
Illarionov, an outspoken and respected liberal economist, has often clashed with government officials on a variety of reform issues -- including the Kyoto Protocol, which will die if Russia does not ratify it. It is not clear how much sway Illarionov has with Putin, a fellow St. Petersburger.
Putin appeared to back the protocol earlier this year in exchange for the European Union supporting Russia's bid to join the World Trade Organization. But late Thursday, when asked by a Japanese journalist whether his fierce opposition to Kyoto reflected the Kremlin's position, Illarionov said Putin had never said he backs the treaty. "Putin didn't say he supports the Kyoto Protocol, he said he supports the Kyoto process," Illarionov said. He did not elaborate.
After signing a trade deal with the EU in May, Putin said Brussels had met Russia "halfway" on WTO, which "cannot but affect positively our position on the Kyoto Protocol." But he also stressed that Russia "did not package the issues of WTO and the Kyoto Protocol."
"I cannot say how things will be 100 percent, because ratification is not an issue for the president but for parliament," Putin said at the time.
Illarionov accused Britain and other "imperialist" rich nations of using Kyoto to keep poor nations from developing. The United States backed out of Kyoto in 2001.
Britain denied the charge.
"Global warming is an issue of concern for all citizens of the world and we need to tackle it," British Embassy spokesman Richard Turner said.
Peter Cox, head of the British Meteorological Office's climate, chemistry and ecosystems department, said last week's conference was a publicity stunt by Illarionov, who brought in well-known skeptics to discredit the findings of the International Panel on Climate Control, the basis for Kyoto, Cox said.
"The meeting was set up to challenge the IPCC line," he said. "Illarionov hijacked the meeting by inviting people who were outside the IPCC process and who were bitter about that."
Cox said the conference was "like no other" he had ever attended and said he felt very sorry for the Russian scientists that were used as a "rubber stamp for Illarionov's agenda."
The academy issued a statement after the conference saying that it found "no scientific basis" for the Kyoto Protocol, and that a warmer Earth is actually positive for Russia.
The stated aim of the 1997 protocol is to roll back global carbon dioxide emissions -- which many scientists say cause global warming -- to 1990 levels.
Many poor countries have argued that the agreement puts a disproportionate amount of pressure on their carbon dioxide-intensive, manufacturing-based economies. Illarionov, however, has also opted to attack the very scientific principles on which IPCC bases its argument for implementing the treaty.
Illarionov argued that the real reason every rich nation but America, the world's biggest polluter, backs the protocol is because they want control of emissions quotas, something he said will give developed nations unprecedented control of poor countries' economies.
"Europe has seen the effects of the national-socialist ideology and the Marxist ideology. The imperialist philosophy behind Kyoto is nothing short of these in its scale," he said.
"This is war. But our cause is just and we will prevail."
A Liberal against Kyoto? Where's my scorecard?
Someone should tell Blair that the Russians are IN FAVOR of global warming.
Their country would be very valuable if it wasn't frozen solid.
carbon dioxide emissions <P.Its all make up
"President Vladimir Putin's personal adviser on all things economic"
"It is not clear how much sway Illarionov has with Putin, a fellow St. Petersburger."
What? He's taking lessons from castro?
If Russia is smart they won't sign that treaty. There is nothing in it for them and basically, it won't do anything anyway. Actually, I think that the EU has figured out what a boondoggle it is and would love to have a face saving way out.
Isn't that historical SOP for the Russians?
And if he was threatening to bury Kyoto, shouldn't he have followed traditional Russian procedure and banged his shoe on the podium?
I can work with that, thanks.
the Kyoto Protocol, which will die if Russia does not ratify it.one quibble -- the Kyoto Protocol was born dead.
GO ANDREI GO!!!
In Russia, a liberal is someone who is for capitalistic reforms and free market. A conservative in Russia is a communist. Liberal and conservative have different meanings depending on where one is discussing.
I think they knew all along and were just hoping we would let ourselves get pressured into it. But Clinton, Bush, Congress, Russia and China have no intention of crippling themselves to appease the chicken little lunatics. The only true believer left is Al Gore, who makes Lyndon LaRouche look sane.
Global warming sounds like a good idea in many parts of Russia.
How is that different from what I said?
It isn't. I was just adding a bit too it.
"A Liberal against Kyoto? Where's my scorecard?"
Over there, "liberal" means like Adam Smith etc. Classical liberal, as opposed to our neo-Liberals which are really so-called "Progressives."
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