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10/10/2011

Letter to Commissioner Connie Hedegaard


Brussels, 10 October 2011

The 17th United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP 17) and the Kyoto Protocol

Dear Commissioner Hedegaard,

The upcoming Climate Change conference in Durban, South Africa, is a defining moment in the 20-year history of climate negotiations, as the first commitment period of the Kyoto Protocol is coming to its end in 2012.

If there is no agreement for a second commitment period in Durban, then negotiations on both tracks might come to a dead-end. It is clear that developing countries will recognize a lack of willingness from the EU and other developed countries to bind themselves to a second commitment period, as a lack of sincere interest for a global climate change agreement.

It is in the EU´s hands to commit, along with any other interested countries, to a second commitment period under the Kyoto Protocol, while negotiating intensively for progress towards a global legally binding agreement under the LCA track. Even if the prospect for a legally binding agreement under LCA seems difficult, it will be totally impossible if the EU does not commit to a second commitment period.

Furthermore, the EU´s agreement to the continuation of the Kyoto Protocol requires very little from the EU, as its own legally binding mitigation target of 20% emission reduction extends until 2020, and we are already emitting 17.3% less compared to 1990 levels.

Hence, Commissioner we would like to urge you to support, even unilaterally, a second commitment period under the Kyoto Protocol and to avoid giving the fatal blow to the negotiations procedure, which although is slow, has been progressing towards the desired outcome i.e. a legally binding global agreement on fighting climate change with obligations for both the developed, emerging and developing countries.

Yours sincerely,

Kriton Arsenis (S&D), Bairbre De Brún (GUE/NGL)

Members of the European Parliament Member of the European Parliament

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