A major UN climate summit in Paris later this year should call on countries to make tough carbon cuts to avoid dangerous global warming, EU document says.
The world’s states should commit to a legally binding emissions cut of 60% by 2050, with five-yearly reviews, in a Paris Protocol to replace the moribund Kyoto agreement at a climate summit later this year, according to a leaked EU document.
But environmentalists have questioned the integrity of the headline 60% figure, and a strategy which is seen as overly-tilted towards the US.
“Major economies, in particular the EU, China and the US, should show political leadership by joining the Protocol as early as possible,” says the EU’s ‘Road to Paris 2015’ communication, which the Guardian has seen. “It should enter into force as soon as countries with a share of 80% of current global emissions have ratified it.
The EU accounts for nine percent of global emissions, compared to China’s 24%, and the 12% emitted by the US, according to the document. “Combined, these targets would cover around half of global emissions,” it says.
As soon as that number reached 80% – or 40 Gigatones of CO2 equivalent pollution – the new Paris Protocol would kick in.
Environmentalists welcomed the EU’s attempt to keep emissions cuts within the rubric of a legally binding deal, rather than seeing it relegated to a protocol annex.
But many noted that the 60% CO2 cut would be measured against 2010 levels, and was thus the same as the bloc’s previous aspiration of a 50% cut measured against 1990 levels – itself a genuflection to a 2007 IPCC report seen as outdated.