European Environment Ministers met on March 15 to discuss the next steps after the failure of the UN conference in Copenhagen last December. While it is positive that they stick to the existing negotiating texts under the Kyoto Protocol as the basis for a future agreement
Friends of the Earth Europe believes that the Council’s conclusions have shortcomings which prevent the EU from achieving a strong and fair solution to the climate crisis.
The Council has been reluctant to increase the EU’s target for reducing greenhouse gas emissions to 30% by 2020, compared to 1990 levels. This is in contrast with the Climate Commissioner Connie Hedegaard, who has expressed support for an unconditional move up to 30%. The Ministers’ position also stands in contradiction with the EU’s long term objective to reduce emissions by 80-95% by 2050, reiterated in these conclusions. Friends of the Earth Europe in partnership with Stockholm Environment Institute (SEI) has conducted research showing that 40% cuts by 2020 and 90% by 2050 without offsetting are technically feasible in Europe. Scientists have confirmed that this is the scale of reductions needed to stay well below a 2°C global temperature increase.
(Friends of the Earth Europe)
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