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Poland Says ‘Climate Neutrality’ Could Clinch UN Deal In Paris


A goal of using technology, and the carbon stored in trees to cut emissions rather than eliminating fossil fuels entirely could be the key to bringing major developing economies to a United Nations agreement on global climate change, its Polish proponent said.

Poland’s climate envoy Marcin Korolec said replacing decarbonization with climate neutrality in the EU joint negotiating position for the U.N. climate talks later this year would be acceptable to more countries.

Poland managed to change the wording at the EU ministers meeting last Friday, which concluded with a joint negotiating position for the U.N. climate talks to be held in December in Paris.

“We should look for an idea by which we could find convergences with big economies like India, China, Mexico, South Africa or Brazil,” Korolec said at the Reuters Eastern Europe Investment Summit.

“That’s why we have proposed the concept of neutrality and I’m very happy that it is EU’s long perspective climate goal, because it is much more rational than simple idea of decarbonization which could not be accepted by major players”.

Negotiators from more than 190 countries will meet in Paris to thrash out a United Nations climate deal designed to limit the rise in global temperatures to 2 degrees, the level scientists say is needed to stave off the worst effects of climate change such as drought and flooding.

A parliamentary election in October means Poland could have a new government by the Paris summit but Korolec said he thought any new government would support the EU position agreed last week.

Poland’s main opposition party PiS, which is considered as conservative and pro-coal, is most likely to win, according to most recent opinion polls.

The party’s energy spokesman has said earlier that PiS hoped any U.N. climate deal in Paris will be non-binding and that Poland’s quitting the EU’s flagship scheme to cut emissions, the Emissions Trading System (ETS) “is not impossible”.

Korolec said he is opposed to some of the changes to the ETS from 2021 proposed by the European Commission in July.


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