U.N. boss urges Europe to lead climate fight

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Ban Ki-moonUN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon on Monday urged the European Union to stay at the forefront of efforts to combat climate change in order to prioritise economic growth.

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Ki-moon said that the efforts were to be a step on the way to a new global deal in 2015 on how to limit global warming to the two degrees Celsius that scientists said would prevent the most devastating effects of climate change.

“We must be committed to contain this global world temperature within two degrees centigrade.

“ I count on the European Union to lead this campaign,” said Ki-moon.

Ban, on his way to Warsaw, said he would call there for strong political leadership and greater ambition in cutting the emissions of greenhouse gases, mostly from burning fossil fuels.

Europe had prided itself on promising deeper greenhouse gas cuts than other nations.

However, its leadership had begun to flag as business leaders have argued that the cost of promoting renewable energy and tougher emission controls could push some of the 28 EU members back into recession.

With many economies in other parts of the world also struggling to sustain growth, expectations for Warsaw are low.

At the weekend, talks on how to set up new carbon markets to cut greenhouse gas levels broke down after developing nations refused to advance the issue unless rich nations did more to cut their own emissions, sources said.

Poland, whose economy relies on highly polluting coal, had used the occasion to host a clean-coal conference.

Japan on Friday said the closure of its nuclear plants, which generate power without emitting greenhouse gases, meant it had to abandon previous pledges on cutting carbon emissions.

The European Commission, the EU executive, is expected to publish its proposals for climate and energy policy up to 2030 in January, although securing member states’ agreement is likely to be difficult.

The proposals are expected to be accompanied by a report on the impact on industry of energy prices as subsidies for renewable energy are blamed for higher energy prices while the United States benefits from cheap shale gas.

EU sources say a cut in greenhouse gas emissions of around 40 per cent from 1990 levels was under consideration. (Reuters/NAN)

Babatunde Akinsola
Babatunde Akinsolahttps://naija247news.com
Babatunde Akinsola is aNaija247news' Southwest editor. He's based in Lagos and writes on the Yoruba Nation political issues, news and investigative reports

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