UN climate chief predicts US turnaround on warming

May 12, 2011 - 4:15 PM

NEW YORK (AP) — The U.N. climate chief says Washington's inaction on climate legislation is a "very serious hand brake" on world efforts to combat global warming.

But Christiana Figueres says she believes the U.S. will eventually join the rest of the industrialized world in mandatory reductions of greenhouse gases.

Figueres says the American inertia isn't "a permanent state of affairs that the world will be able to live with."

Figueres is head of the U.N. climate treaty secretariat. She met Thursday with editors and reporters of The Associated Press in New York on a day when the National Research Council issued an authoritative report in Washington urging the federal government to act to substantially reduce greenhouse gas emissions.