Bali Island, Indonesia - The consequences of climate change promises to be expensive and would require rich countries to contribute 86 billion dollars annually by 2015 at the latest to help poor nations, the lead author of a study commissioned by the United Nations said Tuesday. "The world's poor are not responsible for global warming," Kevin Watkins, author of the independent Human Development Report, said at a UN climate conference. "Having created the climate crisis, developed countries must face up to their responsibilities, including the responsibility to protect the potential victims." The report, commissioned by the United Nations Development Programme, warned of an "adaptation apartheid" if rich countries invest in new, "clean" technology and the world's poor or left to "sink or swim." It was released at a conference in Nusa Dua on Bali, where government delegates, scientists and environmentalists from nearly 190 countries have gathered for two weeks of meetings that are to end Friday. Their goal is to lay the groundwork for a new international initiative to combat climate change after the Kyoto Protocol expires in 2012.
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