Stern optimistic US will act on climate

British climate-change expert Nicholas Stern said he is confident the United States will move to regulate greenhouse-gas emissions in the first half of next year, Reuters reported. The US will also provide leadership to help the world reach an agreement in late 2009 on slowing climate change, he said.

Stern, who has met with the campaigns of the two major candidates for US president, said he expected a new climate bill would make progress in the first half of next year.

"Whoever is elected, there will be action in the first six months to deliver a bill," Stern was quoted as saying. "It doesn’t have to be all tied up in the first half of next year… but the sense of
direction has to be clear."

Stern released a key report in 2006 that said inaction on greenhouse-gas emissions could cause dire economic consequences equal to the Great Depression of the 1930s.

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