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The United States and China want to water down a proposed plan for fighting climate change, arguing that action to reduce greenhouse gases will be more costly and time-consuming than scientists claim, documents show.
The U.S. and China, in papers reviewed by The Associated Press, claim that a proposed European cap on greenhouse gas levels is too low and reaching the target would be too expensive.
Delegates expect a fight to preserve the key conclusions of the draft, which says emissions can be cut below current levels if the world takes such steps as reducing use of carbon-heavy fuels like coal, investing in energy efficiency and changing farm methods.
The draft of the third report says the world must quickly embrace a basket of technological options — already available and being developed — just to keep the temperature rise to 3.6 degrees.
But the United States wants to take a longer-term approach with mitigation measures, a position that will likely anger island nations and other developing countries already feeling the effects of climate change.
The U.S. and China challenge the economic benefits of reducing emissions, disputing recommendations by European governments that greenhouse gases be kept from going above 445 parts per million in the air. The current level of greenhouse gases is about 430 ppm.