Finally, a country has stepped up to adopt a target approaching the scale needed to avoid dangerous climate change. Congratulations Norway; your coalition Government’s target to reduce emissions by 40% below 1990 levels makes you the leader amongst Annex I countries.
This announcement has made ECO very happy. To be honest, we have been getting glum lately. Endless meetings – driven to the verge of pointlessness by negotiators constrained by a lack of political will back home – were taking its toll. Now, we finally have an example of the political will needed to move these negotiations forward. The big step up in Japan’s target from 8% emissions reduction below 1990 levels to 25%, even if not quite enough, is also cause for hope.
Norway’s target is an example of real leadership and a breath of fresh air. Even so, ECO urges Norway to make a strong commitment to domestic reductions and not just continue offsetting. But today is not the day to quibble.
So to the rest of Annex I countries, the challenge to your leaders is this: Are you going to match Norway’s target? You have less than a month to prove your calibre and bring a new, much stronger national target to Barcelona.