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Africa: Climate Change and Energy - New Round of G8 Talks in Mexico

01.01.70

Governments are failing to take the action needed to reach legally binding targets agreed under the Kyoto treaty on climate change, Friends of the Earth International warned ahead of a key meeting of Ministers from 20 of the biggest energy-consuming nations in Monterrey, Mexico.

The October 3-4 gathering is the second of the 'Gleneagles Dialogue on Clean Energy, Climate Change and Sustainable Development' which was born at the 2005 summit of the group of eight (G-8) richest nations, and sets the stage for crucial United Nations talks on international action to tackle climate change scheduled to take place in Nairobi, Kenya on November 6-17, 2006.

As well as mitigation measures, sustainable development and adaptation needs are also due to be discussed.

Friends of the Earth International is disappointed that despite requests, civil society participation and contribution is not allowed at the meeting.

According to Friends of the Earth International, existing emission targets under the Kyoto treaty are insufficient to avoid dangerous climate change, with far deeper cuts required. But despite dramatic scientific warnings

and substantial evidence that climate change is happening faster than previously predicted, global emissions are still on the rise.

Catherine Pearce, Friends of the Earth International climate campaigner said: "Last year heads of state at the G8 summit in Gleneagles recognised the urgent need for decisive action against climate change whilst 'eradicating energy poverty' around the world. But they are still focused on their dependence of fossil fuels. To adequately address climate change this dialogue must help to build the conditions for the solutions to flourish.

A fundamental transformation of our energy use is required. The richest countries in this room could begin the challenge with reversing investment away from fossil fuels and into renewables and energy efficiency technologies. This would also help to build well needed momentum into the formal UN climate negotiations. "

In particular, G8 leaders must commit themselves to strong future actions to combat climate change. These should include increased efforts to meet Kyoto targets, and a clear signal that their commitments will increase after 2012 (when the first commitment period of the Kyoto Protocol is due to end). Collectively the G8 nations, which represent just 13 per cent of the world's population, are responsible for 45 per cent of the world's greenhouse gas emissions.

Many external inputs will be received during the meeting, including the International Energy Agency, a presentation from Sir Nick Stern on his findings so far on the economics of climate change, and contributions from the World Bank on their Clean Energy Investment Framework which feeds directly into the Dialogue.

Expert opinion

Halter Marek

02.12.06

Halter Marek
Le College de France
Olivier Giscard dEstaing

02.12.06

Olivier Giscard dEstaing
COPAM, France
Mika Ohbayashi

02.12.06

Mika Ohbayashi
Institute for Sustainable Energy Poliy
Bill Pace

02.12.06

Bill Pace
World Federalist Movement - Institute for Global Policy
Peter I. Hajnal

01.12.06

Peter I. Hajnal
Toronto University, G8 Research Group