Arquivo da tag: G7

Prime Minister Stephen Harper agrees to G7 ‘decarbonization’ by 2100 (CBC News)

Canada, Japan work behind scenes to water down statement on climate change, CP reports

CBC News Posted: Jun 08, 2015 11:02 AM ET Last Updated: Jun 08, 2015 2:47 PM ET

Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper takes his place for the official family photo with outreach partners at the G7 Summit in Garmisch, Germany, on Monday.

Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper takes his place for the official family photo with outreach partners at the G7 Summit in Garmisch, Germany, on Monday. (Adrian Wyld/Canadian Press) 

Prime Minister Stephen Harper has agreed to a G7 commitment to deep cuts in carbon emissions by 2050 — with an eventual stop in the use of fossil fuels by the end of the century.

The call for a low-carbon footprint will “require a transformation in our energy sectors,” Harper said Monday at a news conference in Germany, following the two-day G7 summit.

“Nobody’s going to start to shut down their industries or turn off the lights,” he said. “We’ve simply got to find a way to create lower-carbon emitting sources of energy — and that work is ongoing.”

RAW: Harper says G7 unanimous on environment1:47

Canada and Japan blocked attempts at a stronger statement on binding greenhouse gas reduction targets, according to The Canadian Press sources who saw a working draft of the G7 communiqué, which was released today as the summit wrapped up.

“Nobody’s going to start to shut down their industries or turn off the lights.”–  Prime Minister Stephen Harper

“We emphasize that deep cuts in global greenhouse gas emissions are required with a decarbonization of the global economy over the course of this century,” the G7 leaders said in their final communiqué.

“We commit to doing our part to achieve a low-carbon global economy in the long-term including developing and deploying innovative technologies striving for a transformation of the energy sectors by 2050 and invite all countries to join us in this endeavour.”

German Chancellor Angela Merkel had been pushing the G7 to endorse a pledge to reach zero carbon emissions.

“Canada and Japan are the most concerned about this one,” said one source who was privy to discussions but would only speak on the condition of anonymity. “The two of those countries have been the most difficult on every issue on climate.”

During question period on Monday, NDP Leader Tom Mulcair said the government’s role in “toning down” the communiqué leaves “Canada with an environmental black eye on the world stage.”

In May, Canada committed to reducing its greenhouse gas emissions by 30 per cent below 2005 levels by 2030 — an ambitious goal that will rely on emission targets previously announced by the provinces.

‘Groundbreaking’ agreement

The G7 commitment comes in the midst of a United Nations climate conference in Bonn, Germany, and ahead of a more major one in Paris in December that hopes to negotiate a new, post-2020 global climate agreement.

Members of the Climate Action Network, an international coalition of more than 850 organizations, called the G7 agreement a “groundbreaking” one that will help push forward the new global agreement.

“The course is right, but more speed, ambition and specific actions are needed,” Samantha Smith, leader of WWF’s Global Climate and Energy Initiative, said in a statement.

“The course is right, but more speed, ambition and specific actions are needed.”– Samantha Smith, WWF’s Global Climate and Energy Initiative

“Developing countries are ready to move fast and far on renewables, but they need finance and technology from rich countries to do it. We need to see more of these concrete commitments for immediate action.”

Alden Meyer, of the Union of Concerned Scientists, said in a statement that the agreement is a sign that “the end of the fossil fuel era is inevitable, and the dawning of the age of renewables is unstoppable.

“Now G7 countries must increase the ambition of their domestic climate plans, so as to do their fair share of meeting this global goal.”

Harper slams Putin at G7

The two-day G7 summit in the Bavarian alps touched on various international issues, including the global economic recovery, fighting terrorism and its financing, as well as the ongoing conflict in Ukraine.

The G7 — which includes the leaders of Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the United States, the United Kingdom, as well as the president of the European Council and the president of the European Commission — was formerly the G8 until Russia was suspended last year over its involvement in the conflict in Ukraine.

Harper described Russian President Vladimir Putin as a disruptive force whose former role in the organization inhibited co-operation.

“Mr. Putin makes it his business to be deliberately troublesome,” he said.

While there may be cases in which G7 countries have to deal with Putin “because Russia remains an important country on some issues,” Harper emphasized that Putin does not share the values of G7 members.

“The G7 is a group of countries that share fundamental values and objectives in the world. We share similar types of economies so we share similar problems. We also share similar values — deep, progressive and aggressive commitments towards democracy, freedom, human rights and the rule of law,” he said.

“Mr. Putin fits none of these definitions.”

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G7 leaders agree to phase out fossil fuel use by end of century (The Guardian)

German chancellor Angela Merkel announces commitment to ‘decarbonise global economy’ and end extreme poverty and hunger

G7 leaders, including Angela Merkel (in pink jacket), and invitees line up for the traditional group photo at the end of the summit.

G7 leaders, including Angela Merkel (in pink jacket), and invitees line up for the traditional group photo at the end of the summit. Photograph: Sven Hoppe/dpa/Corbis

The G7 leading industrial nations have agreed to cut greenhouse gases by phasing out the use of fossil fuels by the end of the century, the German chancellor, Angela Merkel, has announced, in a move hailed as historic by some environmental campaigners.

On the final day of talks in a Bavarian castle, Merkel said the leaders had committed themselves to the need to “decarbonise the global economy in the course of this century”. They also agreed on a global target for limiting the rise in average global temperatures to a maximum of 2C over pre-industrial levels.

Environmental lobbyists described the announcement as a hopeful sign that plans for complete decarbonisation could be decided on in Paris climate talks later this year. But they criticised the fact that leaders had baulked at Merkel’s proposal that they should agree to immediate binding emission targets.

As host of the summit, which took place in the foothills of Germany’s largest mountain, the Zugspitze, Merkel said the leading industrialised countries were committed to raising $100bn (£65bn) in annual climate financing by 2020 from public and private sources.

In a 17-page communique issued after the summit at Schloss Elmau under the slogan “Think Ahead, Act Together”, the G7 leaders agreed to back the recommendations of the IPCC, the United Nations’ climate change panel, to reduce global greenhouse gas emissions at the upper end of a range of 40% to 70% by 2050, using 2010 as the baseline.

Merkel also announced that G7 governments had signed up to initiatives to work for an end to extreme poverty and hunger, reducing by 2030 the number of people living in hunger and malnutrition by 500 million, as well as improving the global response to epidemics in the light of the Ebola crisis.

Poverty campaigners reacted with cautious optimism to the news.

The participant countries – Germany, Britain, France, the US, Canada, Japan and Italy – would work on initiatives to combat disease and help countries around the world react to epidemics, including a fund within the World Bank dedicated to tackling health emergencies, Merkel announced at a press conference after the summit formally ended on Monday afternoon.

Reacting to the summit’s final declaration, the European Climate Foundation described the G7 leaders’ announcement as historic, saying it signalled “the end of the fossil fuel age” and was an “important milestone on the road to a new climate deal in Paris”.

Samantha Smith, a climate campaigner for the World Wildlife Fund, said: “There is only one way to meet the goals they agreed: get out of fossil fuels as soon as possible.”

The 350.org campaign group put out a direct challenge to Barack Obama to shut down long-term infrastructure projects linked to the fossil fuel industry. “If President Obama wants to live up to the rhetoric we’re seeing out of Germany, he’ll need to start doing everything in his power to keep fossil fuels in the ground. He can begin by rejecting the Keystone XL pipeline and ending coal, oil and gas development on public lands,” said May Boeve, the group’s director.

Others called on negotiators seeking an international climate deal at Paris later this year to make total decarbonisation of the global economy the official goal.

“A clear long-term decarbonisation objective in the Paris agreement, such as net zero greenhouse gas emissions well before the end of the century, will shift this towards low-carbon investment and avoid unmanageable climate risk,” said Nigel Topping, the chief executive of the We Mean Business coalition.

Merkel won praise for succeeding in her ambition to ensure climate was not squeezed off the agenda by other pressing issues. Some environmental groups said she had established herself as a “climate hero”.

Observers said she had succeeded where sceptics thought she would not, in winning over Canada and Japan, the most reluctant G7 partners ahead of negotiations, to sign up to her targets on climate, health and poverty.

Iain Keith, campaign director of the online activist network Avaaz, said: “Angela Merkel faced down Canada and Japan to say ‘Auf Wiedersehen’ to carbon pollution and become the climate hero the world needs.”

The One campaigning and advocacy organisation called the leaders’ pledge to end extreme poverty a “historic ambition”. Adrian Lovett, its Europe executive director, said: “These G7 leaders have signed up … to be part of the generation that ends extreme poverty and hunger by 2030.” But he warned: “Schloss Elmau’s legacy must be more than a castle in the air.

But the Christian relief organisation World Vision accused the leaders of failing to deliver on their ambitious agenda, arguing they had been too distracted by immediate crises, such as Russia and Greece. “Despite addressing issues like hunger and immunisation, it was nowhere as near as ambitious as we would have hoped for,” a spokeswoman said.

Jeremy Farrar of the Wellcome Trust said the proposals would “transform the resilience of global health systems”. But he said the success of the measures would depend on the effectiveness with which they could be coordinated on a global scale and that required fundamental reform of the World Health Organisation, something the leaders stopped short of deciding on.

“We urge world leaders to consider establishing an independent body within the WHO with the authority and responsibility to deliver this,” he said.

Merkel, who called the talks “very work-intensive and productive” and defended the format of a summit that cost an estimated €300m (£220m), said that the participants had agreed to sharpen existing sanctions against Russia if the crisis in Ukraine were to escalate.

She also said “there isn’t much time left” to find a solution to the Greek global debt crisis but that participants were unanimous in wanting Greece to stay in the eurozone.

Demonstrators, about 3,000 of whom had packed a protest camp in the nearby village of Garmisch Partenkirchen, cancelled the final action that had been planned to coincide with the close of the summit.

At a meeting in the local railway station, the head of Stop G7 Elmau, Ingrid Scherf announced that the final rally would not go ahead “because we’re already walked off our feet”. She denied the claims of local politicians that the group’s demonstrations had been a flop. “I’m not at all disappointed, the turnout was super,” she said. “And we also had the support of lots of locals.”

Only two demonstrators were arrested, police said, one for throwing a soup dish, another for carrying a spear.

Additional reporting by Suzanne Goldenberg