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N American nations agree to push for green fund to cut carbon emissions

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Canada’s Prime Minister Harper, Mexico’s President Calderon and U.S. President Obama (L-R) pose for pictures after the North American Leaders’ Summit in Guadalajara, Mexico, August 10, 2009. The summit concluded here on Monday.

N American nations agree to push for green fund to cut carbon emissions

GUADALAJARA, MEXICO, Aug. 10 (Xinhua) — The three North American nations have agreed to push for a green fund to reward nations that cut carbon emissions, Mexico’s President Felipe Calderon said on Monday at a press conference in Guadalajara that marks the end of two days of meeting in the western Mexico city.

“We agreed a green fund and to work together to achieve a climate change agreement in Copenhagen,” Calderon said. Denmark’s capital Copenhagen will host the talks to find a new agreement to replace the Kyoto Protocol on climate change at the end of the year.

Calderon had proposed the green fund scheme at the Major Nations Climate Conference held in southern Mexican state Morelos in June. All nations would pay into the fund, but poorer nations who reduced carbon emissions would be able to withdraw more than they put in.


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Canada’s Prime Minister Harper, U.S. President Obama and Mexico’s President Calderon (L-R) leave after a joint news conference at the North American Leaders’ Summit in Guadalajara, Mexico, August 10, 2009. The summit concluded here on Monday.

“We are also working to boost our carbon bonds markets with the goal of creating an international carbon bond market,” he said.

Carbon bonds are a private sector version of the green fund, where individuals, companies and non-government organizations who can reduce emissions sell the right to make emissions to richer carbon emitters.

Speaking at the same meeting, Canada’s prime minister, Stephen Harper, said that the three leaders of the United States, Mexico and Canada had agreed that it is vital to confront climate change.

“We know that the cost of acting will be high, but the cost our people and future generations will have to pay for inaction will be incalculably more,” he said.

Calderon said the nations had agreed to make progress on green energy and technology.

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Canada’s Prime Minister Harper, Mexico’s President Calderon and U.S. President Obama (L-R) pose for pictures after the North American Leaders’ Summit in Guadalajara, Mexico, August 10, 2009.

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U.S. president arrives in Mexico for summit

1aUS President Barack Obama (L) and new US Ambassador in Mexico Carlos Pascual disembark from the Air Force One at the airport of Guadalajara in Mexico on August 9, 2009. Leaders of the United States, Mexico and Canada will discuss issues related to regional prosperity and security during the fifth summit of North American leaders held on Aug. 9-10 in Guadalajara.

U.S. president arrives in Mexico for summit

GUADALAJARA, Mexico, Aug. 9 (Xinhua) — U.S. President Barack Obama arrived in Guadalajara, Mexico on Sunday by Air Force One to attend the Fifth North American Leaders’ Summit, during which he will meet Mexican President Felipe Calderon and Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper.

The summit will be held in Guadalajara, capital of the Mexican state of Jalisco, west of Mexico, on Sunday and Monday.

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U.S. President Barack Obama (L) and Mexico’s President Felipe Calderon shake hands while they hold a bilateral meeting at the Cabanas Cultural Center in Guadalajara while attending the North American Leaders’ Summit, August 9, 2009.

Obama will have a bilateral meeting with Calderon later and then attend the official launch of the meeting in Guadalajara, at a dinner with Harper and Calderon. Obama, the third leader to arrive at the summit, was greeted on the tarmac of Guadalajara airport by Jalisco Governor Emilio Gonzalez Marguez. He will travel to Guadalajara’s Hilton Hotel by helicopter.

Earlier on Sunday, members of the Alternative Social Organizations Movement rallied to demand a renegotiation of the three nations’ main treaty, the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), which came into force 15 years ago.

The demonstrators protested at the cross roads of main streets Chapultepec and Vallarte, close to the city’s U.S. consulate. There was no violence during the protest.

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Obama says this is not the time to reopen NAFTA

3U.S. President Barack Obama walks out of the West Wing to speak on the state of the U.S. economy in the Rose Garden of the White House in Washington, August 7, 2009.

Obama says this is not the time to reopen NAFTA

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Barack Obama said on Friday that given the weakened state of the U.S., Mexican and Canadian economies, this is not the time to reopen the NAFTA treaty for negotiations.

Ahead of a summit in Guadalajara, Mexico, with Mexican President Felipe Calderon and Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper, Obama said it was important to stabilize each country’s economy.

Obama as a presidential candidate last year expressed a desire to reopen the North American Free Trade Agreement to include enforceable labor and environmental standards in the pact.

Speaking to Hispanic reporters, Obama said he still believed side agreements on labor and environmental protections should be incorporated into the core of the agreement.

“But I will be honest with you: at a time when the economy has been shrinking drastically and trade has been shrinking around the world, at a time when Mexico has suffered a double-digit blow because not only of a declining economy but because of the effects of H1N1 on tourism, we probably want to make the economy more stabilized in the coming months before we have a long discussion around further trade negotiations.”

Obama, who departs on Sunday for Mexico for talks Sunday night and Monday, said his top priority at the moment is to make sure the economies of all three nations are strong.

“In terms of refining some of our agreements, that is not where everyone’s focus is right now because we are in the middle of a very difficult economic situation,” Obama said, while adding that he was still interested in learning where the treaty can be improved.

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