VIDEO: EU “pleasantly surprised” with China’s climate action

By Daniel Schweimler
RTCC in Durban

The EU is “pleasantly surprised” by China’s progress on Climate Change, chief negotiator Arthur Runge-Metzger told RTCC.

While Beijing has made strides Runge-Metzger said the US was stuck in a difficult political position domestically that has thwarted its own headway in the climate negotiations.

“We are very much looking forward to seeing what other countries are doing about climate change and we were pleasantly surprised by China,” said Runge-Metzger. “It has already inserted its Cancun pledge in to its next five year plan. That is a very important step but there are many other countries that will have to follow suit. In some countries, the pledge is made, but the implementation is shaky.”

When asked if the United States had become an obstructive force in the process Runge-Metzger refused to criticise them too heavily.

“I think the United States is in a very difficult situation. The Obama administration is certainly committed to move on climate change but the situation in Congress and the Senate does not allow any movement forward and that is a huge problem because there are many other countries that can just hide behind that position,” said Runge-Metzger.

“Applying pressure to the US is something that we need to do collectively. It also important that those who hide behind the United States come out and are very clear out about being committed and showing sufficient political will to take this discussion forward towards real implementation.”

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