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Brazil's President Calls for Action on Climate Change, Fighting Poverty


Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva has called for urgent action to address climate change, poverty and social inequality.

At the U.N. General Assembly Tuesday, Mr. da Silva warned about the growing risks of what he called the "unprecedented environmental and human catastrophe" if the groundwork for global development is not rebuilt. He said the dispossessed of the Earth should not have to bear the costs of irresponsibility by those he described as the "privileged few."

The Brazilian leader also urged nations to pay greater attention to fighting hunger and poverty, saying there will be no lasting peace if inequality is not reduced.

He called for countries to develop new energy strategies that include the use of biofuels, and for nations to fully comply with their commitments to the Kyoto Protocol aimed at reducing greenhouse gases that are blamed for global warming.

President Bush, who has long opposed negotiated limits on greenhouse gases, has rejected the Kyoto pact of 1997.