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EU takes Kyoto fight to Moscow

MOSCOW, Russia -- A European Union delegation has arrived in Moscow to discuss the fate of the Kyoto climate treaty.

The delegation started a international tour on Friday aimed at shoring up support for the treaty now that Washington has pulled out of the agreement.

The new U.S. administration of President George W. Bush withdrew last month from the treaty, which aims to place limits on carbon dioxide emissions to prevent global warming.

The protocol calls for countries to cut heat-trapping emissions by an average 5.2 percent below 1990 levels by 2012.

The delegation -- led by Kjell Larsson, Sweden's environment minister -- is due to meet Russian Trade and Economic Development Ministry officials.

It will also hold talks with officials in a number of countries, including Iran, China and Japan, which are at different stages of economic development and which have different interests in the climate treaty.

The Bush administration says the treaty is biased against rich countries and would harm the U.S. economy.

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European and other international officials have vowed to pursue ratification without Washington.

Russia is one of the world's biggest polluters, but its greenhouse gas emissions fell by 30 percent over the last decade amid a post-Soviet collapse in its economic output.

U.S. carbon dioxide emissions have continued to grow since the treaty was signed and are now nearly 15 percent above 1990 levels.

Reuters contributed to this report.

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4:30pm ET, 4/16

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