Obama, Harper Announce Clean Energy Dialog

Feb 20 2009 | 10:29am ET

Canada and the United States will open a dialog on clean energy with the aim of lowering greenhouse gas emissions.

The initiative was announced Thursday in Ottawa, where Barack Obama spent seven hours during his first trip abroad as U.S. president.

Plans for a dialog seemed to fall short of Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s call for a wider-ranging pact on greenhouse gas emissions and energy. The two countries will share technology for capturing and storing carbon emissions, but have made no promises of a North American system for regulating emissions.

Obama said the United States had to work out its own system first. Harper raised the possibility of Canada’s eventually joining that system:

“We'll be looking ourselves for our own sake at opportunities for harmonization to make our policies as effective as they can [be],” he said.

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