More than 10,000 scientists, bureaucrats and politicians from 186 countries have gathered Monday on the Indonesian island of Bali for the beginning of what is perhaps the world's largest-ever conference on climate change.
Workers smoke near the globe portion of a giant mock thermometer representing global warming outside the venue of the UN climate change conference in Nusa Dua, Bali, on Monday.
(Dita Alangkara/Associated Press)
The United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change will run for the next two weeks as delegates work to lay the foundation for a new global treaty that will extend beyond the current Kyoto Protocol, which expires in 2012.
Monday's session opened with delegates giving a standing ovation for Australia as the country's delegate, Howard Bamsey, announced Canberra was ratifying the Kyoto accord.
Shortly before leaving Sunday, Environment Minister John Baird said Canada will head to Bali with a "solid" plan to cut greenhouse gas emissions and will push for a "constructive" agreement with other countries including the world's big emitters of China, India and the United States to encourage global reductions.
Baird has also come under attack by opposition MPs on Parliament Hill who say his government's environmental plan has done little to cut greenhouse gases and does not likely mean Canada will meet its Kyoto emissions targets in time.
The plan, laid out in April, has Canada reaching its targets by 2020 or 2025, instead of 2012, the year laid out in the international treaty to curb climate change.
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