» » Trying to agree a Kyoto 2.0, as the planet simmers

On December 11, 1997, the world agreed that climate change needed to be tackled. The grandly named United Nations Framework on Climate Change adopted the Kyoto Protocol on that day, and it was eventually ratified by 191 countries. Now it's about to expire with a whimper.

Of the major industrial powers, only the European Union is prepared to continue adhering to the Kyoto pact's provisions on cutting greenhouse gases into 2013. Canada, Russia and Japan have already said they won't. The United States never ratified the agreement. So attention is turning to devising a "Kyoto 2.0."

CNN Special: Five cities fighting for climate survival

This week, nearly 200 delegations have gathered in Qatar to plan for a new international climate pact that would come into effect in 2020. But there are huge disagreements between developed and developing countries over sharing the burden.

The Kyoto agreement envisaged binding cuts in emissions by the industrialized world -- but not by rapidly industrializing countries like China and India. They are now the largest and third-largest generator of carbon emissions, respectively, and developing countries account for more than half the world's emissions, according to the International Energy Agency.

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