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ENVIRONMENT

EU Frustration with US Climate Stance

Published onsdag 26 augusti 2009 kl 18.41
During Sweden's EU Presidency, Environment Minister Andreas Carlgren leads the EU's climate negotiations with the US this autumn

Only three months left to the big UN climate meeting in Copenhagen, and European leaders are reported to be frustrated with the stance taken by the US. "We have waited long enough for the US now," says Swedish Environment Minister Andreas Carlgren, who has just returned from the US, where he led an EU-delegation at climate talks in Washington.

Carlgren told the News Agency TT that he has personally been in talks with president Obamas special envoy on climate issues, Mr Todd Stern. "It is absolutely crucial for the result at the meeting in Copenhagen that the US presents a better offer than what they have done so far," Carlgren told TT.

When the members of the G8 in a meeting in July agreed to keep the global warming below two degrees celcius. But only the EU - with its commitment to lower the green house gases with at least 20 % until the year 2020 - has so far made a clear commitment in terms of how to get there.The US has presented a bid which only means a few percentages, while China is not prepared to agree on anything until the developed world has found a way to share the burden of the less developed countries.

According to Andreas Carlgren, the Americans are not adverse to the proposals of the EU on how to support the developing countries - financially and with technology - so that they choose a more climate friendly route than the West did when building its current prosperity. "But they have not given any promises," Carlgren said.

Carlgren now hopes that the G-20 meeting in September will achieve more.

"It is crucial that the US shows they have a credible approach in terms of how they are going to reach the two-degree target," Carlgren told TT.

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