Nearly one-quarter of U.S. senators say the Bush administration has a legal obligation to participate in a climate-change conference in Montreal, Canada, this week.
The Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources this week released an open letter to President Bush, signed by 20 Democratic Senators and four Republicans, urging the United States to actively take part in the Montreal discussions.
The senators say that as a signatory to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, the United States must participate in a way that will aid the Agreement's goal of preventing dangerous human interference with the world's climate.
The Montreal conference is aimed at continuing the work of the Kyoto Protocol on reducing "greenhouse" or heat-trapping, gas emissions into the atmosphere. President Bush withdrew from the agreement in 2001.
The Bush administration says the Kyoto accord is too costly and excludes developing nations such as China and India from requirements to reduce greenhouse gases.