CANBERRA, Australia (AP) -- New Australian Prime Minister Kevin
Rudd has made good on a major campaign promise, officially
ratifying the Kyoto Protocol on global warming just hours after
being sworn in.
As thousands of delegates attend a huge conference in Bali,
Indonesia, aiming to replace the expiring Kyoto accord, Rudd's
action today leaves the U.S. isolated among wealthy countries in
shunning the international pact.
The dramatic step just nine days after Rudd was elected appears
likely to send Australia's standing soaring at the international
climate-change talks in Bali. It could also intensify pressure on
Washington to join the Kyoto framework.
The Bali conference aims to launch negotiations toward a pact to
replace Kyoto when it expires at the end of 2012.