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Hodgson to New York for climate change talks

Tuesday 17 April 2001 Media Statement

Hodgson to New York for climate change talks

Pete Hodgson, convenor of the Ministerial Group on Climate Change, leaves New Zealand tomorrow for international climate change talks in New York City.

The informal meeting has been called by Jan Pronk, the Netherlands Environment Minister and president of the World Conference on Climate Change (COP6) that broke up without resolution last November.

Mr Pronk has asked selected ministers to New York to work through outstanding issues with the implementation of the Kyoto Protocol to the Framework Convention on Climate Change. The talks are in preparation for the resumption of the COP6 meeting in Bonn, Germany, in July.

Mr Hodgson said he would be emphasising New Zealand's continuing support for the purpose of the Kyoto Protocol.

"We want to see negotiations on the implementation of the Protocol completed, so that developed countries can move to ratification of it," he said. "We want to see the Protocol enter into force."

The Protocol would place legally binding greenhouse gas emission targets on developed countries. New Zealand's target for the 2008-2012 commitment period is to stabilise emissions at 1990 levels or take responsibility for any surplus.

While in New York Mr Hodgson will also attend and address a ministerial meeting of the United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development. The Commission's key issues for 2001 are energy, atmosphere and transport. Climate change will be a major theme of ministerial discussions.

On 22 April Mr Hodgson will attend an Anzac Day service at Rockefeller Gardens and read a message from the Prime Minister. The service is organised this year by the New Zealand Consul General's office in New York.

Mr Hodgson returns to New Zealand on Tuesday 24 April.


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