US unveils plan to promote clean technologies in developing countries

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The United States on Monday announced a new plan to promote clean energy technologies in developing countries, despite its reluctance to make more concessions for a deal at the UN climate change conference.

"The program will accelerate deployment of renewable energy and energy efficiency technologies in developing countries, reducing greenhouse gas emissions, fighting energy poverty and improving public health for the most vulnerable, particularly women and children," the United States said in a press release on the sidelines of the climate change conference.

The conference, which started on Dec. 7, was designed to hammer out an international deal on further efforts against climate change after the first commitment period of Kyoto Protocol ends in2012.

It entered a crucial stage on Monday as delegates from over 190countries started ministerial talks here, aiming to get a deal ready before their leaders arrive later this week.

U.S. Energy Secretary Steven Chu said the total contribution to the five-year plan would be 350 million U.S. dollars, among which Washington would pay at least 85 billion dollars.

The White House said the plan is a "quick-start" initiative to complement the much broader technology and finance mechanism of an international climate change agreement.

However, talks on the new deal to fight climate change have been stalled in the past week partly due to division between developed countries and developing countries on climate financing and technology transfer.

Developing countries have been complaining that the commitments made by rich nations so far are insufficient to help them mitigate and adapt to the adverse impact of global warming, for which industrialized countries are historically responsible.

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