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EU must clarify commitment in climate change

EU must step-up and clarify commitment to speedy progress in climate talks, says CAN

November 13, Nairobi, Kenya –As Ministers board their planes to Nairobi, the Climate Action Network (CAN) warns that the EU has a clear duty to lead the way in outlining a timeline for the international climate talks that ensures deeper reductions are agreed in the next two years.

“The EU’s murky position is causing confusion and mistrust,” said Steve Sawyer, Greenpeace International Climate & Energy Policy Advisor. “They need to clear the waters and set a high level of ambition for the Nairobi negotiations. Anything less brings their claimed leadership into question.”

The EU is failing to talk about an adequate timeline necessary to ensure continuation of the Kyoto Protocol here in Nairobi, although they are publicly committed to urgent action on climate change. As current reduction targets are set for the years 2008-12, a new agreement with must be reached by 2008, to ensure the international process continues without interruption.

“France, Germany and the UK should say here what they’re saying in their own national media,” says Matthias Duwe, Director CAN Europe. “Ministers must live up to their publicly voiced sense of urgency by being outspoken about a fast process internationally, everything else is unacceptable and sets them up for embarrassment at the ῎airobi talks.

At the start of the crucial second week of negotiations here in Nairobi, Europe needs to make it clear that it wants a negotiating mandate to be launched in 2007, with a new agreement ready by 2008. Only then will there be enough time to allow for entry into force well before 2012, sending a necessary signal to the global carbon markets, that the system will continue.

“Too many of the EU governments are sitting on the fence in Nairobi,” says Stephan Singer, Head of European Climate and Energy Policy Unit of WWF. “CAN would especially welcome clarity and a clear commitment to a speedy process for continued deeper cuts after 2012 from the likes of Denmark, the Netherlands, and Sweden. These countries have traditionally played a leading role in cutting emissions ΅ Europe but seem to have lost their way.

With the Stern report on the economics of climate change having received wide media reception in Europe and other parts of the world, the financial arguments on urgent action to avoid dangerous climate change are widely known. If the EU’s is serious about stopping further warming, there can be no reason for not saying openly what it takes to get there.


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