1.1. EU finance chiefs mull climate funding for poor nations
5 June 2009, EurActiv
Poor countries will need to be given about 100 billion euros a year by 2020 to help them cut emissions in the fight against climate change, a draft report for European Union finance ministers shows.
The report, obtained by Reuters, comes after the EU laid out plans to hold competitive tenders for the funding, during which poor nations would present their most cost-effective projects for cutting carbon emissions.
Both documents reveal an EU vision taking shape, which finance ministers will fine-tune at a meeting next Tuesday in the run-up to global climate talks in Copenhagen in December.
The key issue in Copenhagen will be finding the finance needed to persuade developing nations to cut emissions and further funding to help them adapt to a problem they say has been caused by rich, industrialised nations.
Such funding could help develop drought-resistant crops or find new sources of fresh water as rising temperatures deplete the glaciers on which millions depend for summer meltwater.
Between half and two thirds of the cheapest options for cutting greenhouse gases up to 2020 or 2030 are in developing countries, the EU’s economic policy committee and the economic and financial committee say in the document on funding needs.
Environmentalists see the document as proof that Europe’s top economic experts recognise the need to support poor nations in the fight against climate change, and question whether finance ministers will be able to ignore such advice.
Emissions cuts by poor nations would partly pay for themselves, because cleaning up power generation and industry also reduces their consumption of expensive fossil fuels. But an extra 100 billion euros a year of investments would still be needed by 2020.
This would include measures to halt the destruction of rainforests and to curb emissions from agriculture.
"Financing to cover additional costs to mitigate greenhouse gases in developing countries will need to come from developing countries’ own contributions, international public finance and the carbon market," the report said.
"It would need to be scaled up gradually, starting shortly after the Copenhagen agreement," it added.
Shipping and airlines options for funding
Shipping and airlines could be tapped for money to help poor nations tackle and adapt to climate change, according to the draft report. "Financing could be complemented by funding from a global instrument addressing international aviation and maritime transport," it said.
But it also made clear that poor nations would be expected to deliver concrete proof of emissions cuts in return for the cash.
"The allocation of support should move towards a performance-based system, strongly incentivising the promotion of actions which maximise climate value for climate money," said the draft, which could be amended.
It raised the possibility that poor nations would have to compete for the money in a competitive tender, which would select the most effective carbon-cutting proposals.
The decision to target shipping at Copenhagen follows years of indecision on how to tackle an opaque industry, trading around the world and often based in offshore jurisdictions with loose governance and regulation.
It also follows years of inaction by shipping and aviation’s governing bodies, the UN-backed International Maritime Organisation and the International Civil Aviation Organisation.
But the EU is determined to act after watching shipping emissions grow by over 60 percent in the last 15 years, while airline emissions doubled (EurActiv 19/05/09).
It has warned that it is ready to curb emissions for the two sectors unilaterally, unless a deal is reached at Copenhagen.

1.2. Aso, ministers fail to agree on Japan’s midterm emissions target+
5 June 2009,
Japanese Prime Minister Taro Aso and five Cabinet ministers concerned failed to reach a consensus Friday on a national midterm emissions reduction target despite the prime minister’s plan to announce it next Wednesday.
The differences emerged chiefly between the Environment Ministry’s hope to set an ambitious target and the industry ministry’s demand for a lower target.
"There were differences in opinion between the ministers. I candidly think that we need to make efforts to put them together," Environment Minister Tetsuo Saito told a news conference, saying that he conveyed his view that a cut of 15-25 percent by 2020 from 1990 levels would be desirable.
Economy, Trade and Industry Minister Toshihiro Nikai separately told reporters, "I asserted that it would not be appropriate to impose a tremendous figure on people by turning to an idealistic theory."
Chief Cabinet Secretary Takeo Kawamura said, "Though we have to take both views into consideration, we naturally have to think about moving in a direction which is ambitious and exercising our leadership in tackling global warming."
Kawamura told a news conference that the participants did not reach consensus over which direction Japan should take.
But they agreed to set the base year for calculating emissions at 2005 in setting the target for 2020, the top government spokesman said.
The participants also shared the view that such countries as the United States, China and India which did not participate in the 1997 Kyoto Protocol should participate in a new carbon-capping framework to succeed the protocol after it expires in 2012, Kawamura said.
The meeting was also attended by Finance Minister Kaoru Yosano and Foreign Minister Hirofumi Nakasone.
The prime minister plans to meet Fujio Mitarai, chairman of the Japan Business Federation, and Tsuyoshi Takagi, president of the Japanese Trade Union Confederation, at the prime minister’s office and request their cooperation to achieve the target if it is decided on.
A government study panel has presented six options for Japan’s greenhouse gas emissions target for 2020, ranging from a 4 percent increase to a 25 percent cut from 1990 levels.
A 2020 target is seen as crucial for Japan and other countries because it is the major focus of U.N. negotiations for a successor treaty to the carbon-capping Kyoto Protocol.
The talks are scheduled to conclude at a key U.N. climate change conference in Copenhagen in December.

Delegates must strengthen UN drafts to strike ambitious climate deal
1 June 2009, WWF
Bonn, Germany – The new texts presented by the UN give a solid basis for negotiation and if strengthened, allow agreeing on a climate change treaty which is capable of minimizing the devastating effects of climate change, WWF said ahead of the upcoming climate change talks in Bonn.
Bonn, Germany – The new texts presented by the UN give a solid basis for negotiation and if strengthened, allow agreeing on a climate change treaty which is capable of minimizing the devastating effects of climate change, WWF said ahead of the upcoming climate change talks in Bonn.
Scientists are in the process of reviewing their predictions and say climate change is accelerating at an alarming and much faster pace then previously expected. According to the global conservation group, now that delegates have text on the table there is no more time to be wasted. Governments have no option but to take action and overcome the stalemate.
“We have a full menu of solutions on the table. Despite some gaps, the draft it is a good starting point and allows reaching a level of ambition which has a chance to tackle one of the world’s potentially most dangerous threats,” said Kim Carstensen, the leader of WWF Climate Initiative.
“Negotiators in Bonn can use the draft papers to develop an ambitious treaty. If they chose to water it down and go for the less ambitious options we will end up with a ‘rotten deal’,” Kim Carstensen said.
The three separate documents presented by the UN, totaling 68 pages, outline options on how to address major issues, such as the levels of emissions reductions, adaptation, technology, finance, carbon markets and reducing emissions from forests. These documents will form the basis of negotiations towards an agreement in December, when negotiators meet in Copenhagen to agree on a global deal that will build upon the existing Convention and Kyoto Protocol, whose current provisions on emission reductions end in 2012.
WWF wants delegates to strengthen the good proposals contained in the texts and delete the less ambitious ones. By now many countries, in particular the most vulnerable ones expect agreement on a global ambition for reductions to keep warming far below a 2oC limit compared to pre-industrial levels.
“We need deep reduction targets by industrialized countries. WWF is asking developed countries to agree to an aggregate emissions reduction goal of at least 40% below 1990 levels by 2020,” Carstensen said. As a non-Kyoto Protocol member, the United States is expected to take on comparable efforts in order to stay within the global environmental limits.
The negotiation texts also need to strengthen and flesh-out an adequately financed and new institutional set-up under the UNFCCC that provides the support needed for emission cuts and adaptation to climate impacts in the developing countries.
The Bonn conference, starting on June 1, is the second of a series of inter-sessional meetings this year to start laying out an ambitious draft of the new global climate treaty before the Deal Day in Copenhagen.

1.3. Next debate: Climate ‘treaty’ or ‘agreement’?
4 June 2009, The Economic Times
NEW DELHI: A treaty or an agreement? The larger debate at the climate change negotiations, currently on in Bonn, that no one is yet picking up but could soon come up seriously, is whether the 181 countries want a new climate treaty or do they want an agreement out of the protracted half-year long negotiations.
The issues for negotiations are divided into two large sets. What is to be done in the long-term, roughly by 2050, is taken up in one section, and what should be done in the short run — under the existing Kyoto Protocol — in the other.
The protocol, in its first phase of implementation from 2008-12 set targets for the rich countries to achieve in cutting their climate changing emissions. The on-going negotiations are about what cuts the industrialized countries should take in the second phase and what should be the duration of the second phase. India and other developing countries want a high enough target to make a difference in the atmosphere, while the industrialized countries are pushing for low enough targets that don’t hurt their economies at the time of a recession.
At the long-term end of the debate, the heated discussions range about how India and other developing countries should also contribute to reducing emissions. Obviously in these discussions, India and China want to first focus what technologies and funds rich nations have to offer.
At the long-term negotiations, the rich nations want a treaty — that would force India and other major economies to accede to a deal with quantified targets for emission reductions. India and China would prefer an agreement that does not alter the existing UN convention — which does not demand any emission reduction targets of them. They would want an `agreed outcome’ — an agreement that is endorsed by all countries and merely taken as that `enhancing’ the existing convention’s provisions.
The game reverses in the Kyoto discussions where India wants a treaty-like regime forcing rich nations to stiff targets in the short run. The rich countries are trying to find a way to make the protocol fizzle off with a softer agreement.
The developing and poor nations are keen that the targets in the Kyoto Protocol are tied up on the high side before they make any progress on the long-term agreement.
But the catch for both set of countries is that if the world has to see a treaty signed by Copenhagen in December this year, the treaty text should be put on table six months ahead of time. The time for that is running out. But then, there are some who believe India may actually gain more if there is no treaty at all for the moment.

1.4. China commentary chides rich nations on climate change
4 June 2009, Reuters
China’s official news agency has accused rich countries of shirking their duty to fight climate change and seeking to divide developing countries, warning that negotiations for a new global climate pact face deep disputes.
The commentary by China’s state-run Xinhua news agency on Fiday comes while negotiations in Bonn seek to foster consensus ahead of a key conference in Copenhagen in December that aims to announce a new international agreement on global warming.
It also comes shortly before the chief U.S. climate change envoy, Todd Stern, arrives in Beijing for talks. China and the United States are the world’s top two emitters of the greenhouse gases from human activity that are stoking global warming, and agreement between them is vital for a new pact.
But the official commentary, and earlier remarks by a senior Chinese negotiator, showed much divides Beijing from Washington over actions to contain greenhouse gas emissions.
"A small number of developed countries have been constantly seeking to shirk their responsibilities and are hoping to revise the basic principles of the negotiations," said the commentary, after noting recent remarks by U.S. officials.
"The climate change negotiations involve all the countries in the world, and there are complex clashes of interests and some conflicts are deep-seated."
Under the Kyoto Protocol, which now governs participating states’ duties to minimise greenhouse gas emissions, developing nations, including China, need not accept mandatory caps on emissions.
The United States is the only major developed country that has not joined the protocol, in large part because many in Washington opposed a treaty that did not set a ceiling for future emissions growth by China and other big developing powers.
The Xinhua commentary said proposals to define stricter requirements for China, India, Brazil and other big emerging emitters than those for the rest of the developing bloc flew in the face of basic principles agreed earlier.
Under "common but differentiated responsibility", developing countries must help fight climate change "but this does not mean emissions reduction promises or targets", said the commentary.
The Xinhua comment echoed remarks made by China’s climate ambassador, Yu Qingtai, on Thursday. Yu told Reuters that an effort to redefine the developing countries would "definitely not succeed".
Stern, who arrives in Beijing over the weekend, has told reporters the United States wants to cooperate with China in curtailing greenhouse gases.
He said the United States should "meet China halfway" by developing a genuine partnership.

1.5. EU calls for urgent, ambitious global action on climate change
4 June 2009, China View
European Union (EU) Environment Commissioner Stavros Dimas on Thursday called for greater urgency and ambition in international negotiations on a new global climate agreement, in order to prevent climate change from reaching dangerous levels.
Dimas launched the appeal on the eve of World Environment Day.
"Urgent and ambitious global action is imperative if we are to prevent dangerous climate change that threatens to cause enormous human suffering, undermine economic progress and poverty reduction, and trigger potentially catastrophic environmental changes," Dimas said in a statement.
"This need for urgency and ambition must be reflected in the pace and content of the international negotiations to prepare the Copenhagen agreement (at the UN climate conference in December)."
He asked negotiators who are meeting in Bonn, Germany, to inject greater momentum into the talks and turn the draft negotiating texts now on the table into a blueprint for a sufficiently ambitious Copenhagen agreement.
"Time is not on our side," he said.
Dimas said the developed world must lead the way. To get global missions onto the right track to prevent dangerous climate change, developed countries must start by cutting their collective emissions to 30 percent below their 1990 levels by 2020, he said.
The EU has shown its leadership in greenhouse gas reduction targets by putting in place legislative measures to achieve a 20-percent reduction by 2020 and by committing to scale this up to30 percent if other countries agree to do their fair share, Dimas said.
He asked other developed countries to also show leadership. Some developed countries have yet to announce emission targets, while those targets on the table so far risk falling well short of the collective 30-percent reduction needed, he said.
Dimas asked developing countries, particularly the big emerging economies, to step up action to limit their rate of emissions growth.
"But only by setting a strong example themselves will developed countries succeed in convincing the developing world to join the global effort that Copenhagen must launch," he said.
Scientists believe that global warming must be kept to less than two degrees Celsius above the pre-industrial temperature in order to prevent dangerous climate change. This requires global greenhouse gas emissions to peak by 2020 and to be reduced by 50 percent by 2050 against 1990 levels.


1.6. Greens get thumbs up in deliberative poll
4 June 2009, EurActiv
Following a weekend of debate ahead of the EU elections, over 350 citizens participating in the second pan-European deliberative poll have voiced growing support for the Greens, eroding the leadership of the two big European Parliament political groups, the centre-right EPP-ED and the Socialists.
"Serious deliberation on climate change significantly increased the electoral popularity of the Greens," James Fishkin, one of the fathers of the deliberative poll, said yesterday (3 June), releasing the results of the second Europe-wide deliberative poll (see background).
Gathered in La Hulpe, near Brussels, for a three-day weekend at the end of May, a scientifically-selected sample of 350 citizens from the 27 member states debated EU policies on immigration and climate change.
Confronted with conflicting arguments, they were able to express an informed opinion and not just give an off-the-cuff response, as often happens in conventional polls.
"If the European Parliament was elected by deliberating citizens, it would have a very different complexion," said Fishkin. "The European public sphere was brought to life for a weekend, and we showed it can make a difference in how people vote," he added.
Europolis sharply increased support for the Greens, whose share of the vote jumped from 8% before to 18% after deliberation. The European People’s Party (EPP) gathered the most support in the initial phase of the poll with a 40% vote share, but later plunged to 30%. The other political parties posted minor losses: the Party of European Socialists (PES) fell from 22 to 21%, while the Liberal Democrats (ALDE) dropped from 9 to 8%.
Contesting the view among policymakers that stringent policy measures to combat global warming would be poorly received by public opinion, the poll shows enthusiasm for action to reduce harmful greenhouse gas emissions, which received the backing of 85% of respondents compared to an initial 72%.
Energy efficiency also rose in popularity from 75 to 84% and the use of an emissions trading scheme (ETS) soared from 39 to 49%. At the same time, support for nuclear energy and biofuels decreased.
"If campaigners informed people the way we did, they will see a change in their opinions," added Fishkin, referring to election campaigns across Europe. "Unfortunately, people are always shown one argument, but not the other," he argued, saying deliberative polls give citizens balanced information, which allows them to evaluate a wide range of trade-offs before they make up their mind on policy options.
Citizens also showed a greater understanding and tolerance of immigration issues after deliberation. Before discussions with policymakers and experts, 69% of participants believed immigrants should be committed to the host country’s way of life, while only 52% did so at the end of the process.
Comparable but smaller falls were also shown in the importance of coming from a similar culture (from 25 to 17%) and in being Christian (13 to 19%).
Even though previous national deliberative polls have been broadcast in national TVexternal to better bridge the chasm between electors and the elected, both pan-European deliberative polls did not engage larger audiences by airing the event live on TV.
According to Fishkin, Europolis was organised as a scientific rather than a communication event. Europe, he said, is an especially difficult place with different languages and different markets. "There is no common public sphere, because of the lack of a same communication system," he concluded, noting the lack of funding for boosting communication.


2.1. The impact of renewable energy policy on economic growth and employment in the European Union
Summary of the results of the Employ-RES research project conducted on behalf of the European Commission DG Energy and Transport
More at:


3.1. Anti Nuclear European Forum (ANEF)
on 17th of June in Linz,Austria
In the autumn of 2007 the European Nuclear Energy Forum (ENEF) was established. Within ENEF it was aimed that all aspects of this controversial form of energy should be discussed. Both, Czech Republic and Slovakia showed intensive efforts for the organization of ENEF. Semi-annual meetings take place in Prague and Bratislava alternately. The next ENEF meeting will be held in Prague on 28th – 29th of May 2009. This is already going to be the fourth meeting. Unfortunately, ENEF failed to fulfill ENEF´s official objectives and is used one-sided as a propaganda instrument for the promotion of nuclear power instead. The Prime Ministers Topolanek and Robert Fico used the opening of the forum several times for unqualified unilateral cheering speeches on nuclear energy, while the discussion of the negative aspects of nuclear energy use has been largely ignored, which resulted in increasing dissatisfaction of the critical participants.
A balanced discussion within the next ENEF meeting on 28th- 29th of May seems impossible and therefore we decided – after intensive discussions with Austrian and international NGOs –to organize a counter event – the European Anti-Nuclear Forum (ANEF) -, under which at least some of the negative aspects of nuclear energy will be discussed on an international level. At the same time ANEF aims to send a strong signal across Europe that the EU-funded renaissance of nuclear energy is not an appropriate instrument to fight climate change. The event is organized by the office of the Anti-nuclear Representative of Upper Austria – Radko Pavlovec-in cooperation with the NGO’s Antiatom Szene and Antiatom-Komitee. Your participation is very important because it needs a strong signal against the nuclear renaissance.
The organizers would like to warmly invite you to participate in ANEF. PARTICIPATE! Your participation is important!
Please register by sending an email to

3.2. Take part! Be a participant on the tour!
We are expecting a total of 25 primarily young participants (around the age of 20-30) from the countries of the tour (Slovenia, Italy, Austria, Slovakia, Hungary). But applications from other countries might be considered as well. Application process is open and continuous till all places are filled.
Expected skills
* good biking,
* open-minded,
* good English,
* communicative,
* interested in the topics: environment protection, sustainability, active citizenship,
* tolerant,
* team-player
Entire tour
Date: 19.06.2009 Koper (Slovenia) – 20.07.2009 Pécs (Hungary)
Total distance (approx.): 740 km
Average distance of a day: 50 km
Days spent with pedalling: 17 days
All the costs are covered by the project for those, who take part on the whole tour, except the travelling costs (to Koper – starting point – and from Pecs – destination)
More at:

3.3. The Bonn Climate Change Talks – June 2009
1 – 12 June 2009
Bonn, Germany
The thirtieth sessions of the UNFCCC Convention subsidiary bodies – SBSTA and SBI, sixth session of the AWG-LCA and the eighth session of the AWG-KP will take place from Monday 1 June till Friday 12 June 2009 in Maritim, Bonn.
Agendas and more information on the meetings:


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