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  1. The White House framed the announcement from the world’s two largest polluters as a move to position the countries as leaders in the fight against climate change ahead of a landmark U.N. conference to address the issue this fall.

I am confused with distinguishing which institution would addrees the issue this fall, The White House or a U.N. conference?. But I had received answers to indicate that U.N. conference would address the issue this fall.

So, I have assumptions for you to advise about.

Assumptions

A reason of saying that "to address the issue this fall" qualified a UN conference is because "to address the issue this fall" is not to be a purpose of "as a move to position the countries in the fight against climate change".

But I guessed that if there are no phrase "as a move to position the countries as leaders in the fight against climate change", "to address the issue this fall" could to be a purpose of "The White House framed the announcement from the world’s two largest polluters".

So, in this sentence below, The White House would address the issue this fall.

-The White House framed the announcement from the world’s two largest polluters ahead of a landmark U.N. conference to address the issue this fall.

And as a result, to distinguish a use of infinitive, I have to compare infinitive with a sentence, whether it is meaningful or not. If it is not meaningful , I have to consider infinitive as a another using that qualified noun or adjective...

Is it proper way to distinguish the infinitive using? Would you give some tips for this?

  • The purpose of the U.N. conference is to address the issue this fall. Framing X as Y occurred before the U.N. conference and "to adress the issue" is much more general than "framing". You can never omit "as move to position the countries in the fight against climate change". If you do that, the sentence doesn't make sense at all. – user140086 Oct 14 '15 at 10:59
  • kyu jeong - When you quote a passage, please quote it accurately. Otherwise you will change the meaning and make it difficult for us to answer. Thanks. – chasly from UK Oct 14 '15 at 12:00
  • chasly from UK , Everyone one - I'm sorry for the mistake. And thank for answers – inches Oct 14 '15 at 13:17
  • Not to worry. We all make mistakes! You're welcome :-) – chasly from UK Oct 14 '15 at 13:29
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In the sentence, it's the U.N. conference that addresses the issue.

Here's the sentence rewritten with brackets to help with parsing: (The White House) framed (the announcement from the world’s two largest polluters) as a move to (position [the countries in the fight against climate change] ahead of [a landmark U.N. conference to address the issue this fall]).

If "address the issue this fall" was to be ascribed to the White House, the parsing would be more like this: (The White House) {framed (the announcement from the world’s two largest polluters) as a move to (position [the countries in the fight against climate change] ahead of [a landmark U.N. conference])} to (address the issue this fall).

This makes the phrase "address the issue this fall" the motive for the framing, but the phrasing in the curly brackets {framed ...} is then awkward.

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Original

The White House framed the announcement from the world’s two largest polluters as a move to position the countries as leader in the fight against climate change ahead of a landmark U.N. conference to address the issue this fall.

Paraphrase

The White House believes that the world's two largest polluting countries made an announcement in order to place themselves as leader[s] in a fight against climate change. They wanted to establish this position in advance of the upcoming U.N. conference that will address the issue of climate change this fall.

Note

The sentence draws attention to the irony of the worst polluters pretending to be the most concerned with the problem of pollution. They have cynically done so in order to look good when they take part in the upcoming conference.

Answer

The U.N. conference will address the issue.

  • Is it intentional to omit as leader in the original sentence? Without "as leader", the verb position doesn't work that well. – user140086 Oct 14 '15 at 11:56
  • Yeah! And I think as leader should be changed to as leaders. What do you think? – user140086 Oct 14 '15 at 12:04
  • @Rathony Yes, I agree -- leaders. – chasly from UK Oct 14 '15 at 12:05
  • I'm not convinced that it's necessary to characterize the announcement as either ironic or cynical. Any meaningful reduction in carbon emission must be lead by China and the US because they're the largest emitters. And in any case, the political commentary doesn't contribute anything to the OP's understanding of sentence structure. – Caleb Oct 14 '15 at 14:30
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I would parse it as:

The White House framed the announcement
(from the world’s two largest polluters)
as a move to position the countries
(in the fight against climate change)
ahead of a landmark U.N. conference
to address the issue this fall.

Given this, the answer to the overall question is that the conference will be addressing the issue.

It would in my opinion read better if the author had used comma-phrases, and replaced to address with that will address.

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