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Published: Wednesday 07 August, 2013

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The communique on the environment and climate change agreed by G8 leaders during their summit on the Japanese island of Hokkaido marked a softening of the US position. President George W Bush had always resisted committing America to reducing greenhouse gases on this scale.

Yet campaigners were unhappy with the deals vague language. The G8 agreed a goal of achieving at least a 50pc reduction of global emissions by 2050 which does not amount to a binding target.

Moreover, there is a dispute over the base year from which the cut would be calculated. Campaigners say the comparison should be with 1990. But there is no mention of this in the communique.

Yasuo Fukuda, Japans prime minister and the G8s chairman, betrayed his own confusion over this vital topic. Briefing journalists outside the Windsor Hotel on the shores of Lake Toya, he said the reduction would be from 1990 levels.

A nervous aide immediately stepped forward and handed him a note. The prime minister hastily corrected himself, saying the cut would be from present levels.

The leaders had also been under pressure to set a midterm target, specifying an interim reduction in carbon emissions by 2020. Instead, they pledged only that each member would implement ambitious economywide midterm goals, but failed to specify what these would be or lay down a clear deadline.

Peter Grant, the director of Tearfund International, a campaign group, said it was a very disappointing outcome that demonstrated a lack of leadership and vision.

The USs position remains that India and C longchamp leather tote hina, the emerging giants of the global economy, longchamp leather tote must also agree to cut their carbon emissions.

Hence, the G8 communique stressed that climate change could only be met by a global response with contributions from all major economies. Daily Telegraph, London longchamp leather tote