Louis Charbonneau
Reuters
March 13, 2009

The Obama administration will work with the United Nations to reach a climate change deal acceptable to the world community by the end of 2009, U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said on Thursday.

[efoods]Speaking to reporters after a two-day trip to Washington earlier this week, Ban said he and the new American leader agreed completely on the urgency of tackling the problem of global warming.

“President Obama and I share a fundamental commitment — 2009 must be the year of climate change. That means reaching a comprehensive agreement in Copenhagen by year’s end,” the U.N. chief said at a monthly news conference.

“With U.S. leadership, in partnership with the United Nations, we can and will reach a climate change deal that all nations can embrace,” he added.

The U.N. hopes to have a new global treaty on climate change in place at a conference in Copenhagen in December. Some experts warn that the world will face more droughts, floods and rising seas if global warming is not addressed soon.

Ban will attend the G20 leaders’ summit in London next month amid fears that the issue could be pushed far down the agenda by the global economic crisis and the need to restore faith in shattered financial markets.

The U.N. chief had planned to invite Obama and other leaders to New York this month for what was dubbed a “mini summit” on climate change, hoping that the U.S. president would use the occasion to announce a reversal on the issue.

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