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APEC countries bolster UN climate change process


Sydney, Australia – Leaders of the world’s fastest growing economies attending the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Summit rejected attempts by Australia and the US to bypass the United Nations in negotiations to reduce climate damaging emissions, says WWF.

"The developing country members of APEC have said clearly that the UN is the place where a new climate change agreement will be struck,” said Greg Bourne, CEO of WWF-Australia.

“It is clear that Australia, the US, and Canada must commit to real binding cuts in emissions to enable post-2012 negotiations in Bali to come to a fruitful conclusion. Those leaders carry the responsibility for taking such targets to Bali.”

In December this year, government ministers will meet in Bali, Indonesia, at a meeting of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change to formally launch negotiations that will conclude in 2009 with an agreement on new binding, deeper cuts in heat-trapping climate pollution.

“This APEC Summit made clear that the UN framework is the right place to move towards deeper emission reductions,” said Diane McFadzien, international climate policy expert at WWF.

“The agreement expresses support to the most vulnerable countries to adapt to climate change, but the financing can be agreed only through an extension of the Kyoto Protocol.”

According to WWF, negotiations for a binding post-2012 agreement must be launched in Bali to conclude by 2009. To keep warming well below the dangerous level of 2°C, that agreement will need to ensure that global emissions peak before 2020, and that industrialized countries reduce their emissions by at least 30% by 2020 from 1990 levels.

WWF expects leaders attending a high-level climate change meeting on 24 September at the UN headquarters in New York to welcome the formal launch of the Bali negotiations.


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