EU wants to See Legally Binding Agreement in UN Climate Change Conference

The European Commission says that this week’s UN climate change conference in Cancun (Mexico) should work towards a legally binding agreement. Key parts of the current agreement on climate change, known as the Kyoto Protocol, expire after 2012 and there is also need for urgent action on the ground.

Last year’s international agreement at Copenhagen recognised the need to keep global temperatures below 2 C pre-industrial levels but several large countries are still reluctant to sign up to a binding framework.

The EU, the world’s leading aid donor, will give a full report in Cancun on its delivery of ‘fast start’ funding to support developing countries. Support to developing countries’ efforts to stop climate change is a key part of negotiations.

In 2010 the EU mobilised ‘fast start’ funding of Eur2.2 billion. This forms part of the EU’s overall commitment made last year to provide Eur7.2 billion over the period 2010-2012.

“The EU is ready to agree on an ambitious global climate framework in Cancun but regrettably some other major economies are not. Cancun can nevertheless take the world a significant step forward by agreeing on a balanced set of decisions covering many key issues,” explains Connie Hedegaard, European Commissioner for Climate Action. “It is crucial that Cancun delivers this progress, otherwise the UN climate change process risks losing momentum and relevance, and so far no one has been able to point to an alternative forum that can deliver more. Therefore Cancun must deliver progress on substance, and it can, if all parties show political will.”

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