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Deal Breaker? UN Climate Deal Must Have Legally Binding Targets, Says EU

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Arthur Neslen, The Guardian

An international deal on global warming must have legally binding targets, Europe will argue at a UN climate summit in Peru next week.

The Lima conference is intended to deliver the first draft of an accord to cut carbon emissions and stave off dangerous climate change, which is expected to be signed at a UN conference in Paris next year.

Speaking on condition of anonymity, a senior EU official in Brussels said that the bloc had not abandoned its position that any agreement on emissions cuts needed to be mandatory.

“Legally binding mitigation targets are definitely something that the EU is pushing for,” the official said. “This is one of our key asks. We’re yet to be convinced that you could have a sufficient rules-base and certitude by alternative approaches. But it is no secret that some other countries are in a different place.”

“The current agreement prototype includes options within options, and has a broad range of views of what constitutes legal force,” the source said. “We need to see Lima bring about more convergence, more focus to the text and allow zooming into the really big political crunch issues, as time is short.”

Claims by major countries that they could not impose economy wide targets were “disingenuous” and liable to stall the negotiating process over how commitments should be differentiated between developed and developing countries, the official added. [….]

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