EU moves to increase Co2 reduction targets ahead of Durban

By RTCC staff

European Parliament Building

European Parliament Building (frankartculinary/flickr)

In an unexpected twist ahead of the COP17 conference in Durban, EU politicians are expected to pass through a resolution today increasing their carbon reduction targets.

The motion- put forward after Tuesday’s Parliamentary debate – backs the European Commission’s ambitions for 30% cuts in carbon emissions – 10% higher than their current target, and higher than its Kyoto commitment require.

Speaking in an Environment Committee debate last week EU climate commissioner Connie Hedegaard said the EU could only agree to a second Kyoto commitment period if the world’s big emitting countries effectively agreed to lower their own emissions.

Today’s vote could be a sign of the political mood within the EU but any resolution would not be binding.

A European Parliament source told Reuters: “I can’t guarantee it, but it’s pretty clear the resolution will go through.”

The motion suggests it is in the EU’s own interest to increase targets as it will create green jobs, growth and security.

It urges the international community to close the gigatonne gap between the carbon that nations have committed to cut and what is needed to keep within the two degree Celsius limit.

The other gap that it says must be closed is in funding to help developing countries adapt to climate change. Under the proposed Green Climate Fund developed countries have pledged to $100 billion annually by 2020 for this cause.

The EU say the current financial crisis is not a reason to back away from this pledged.

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