EU sets 100 billion euro climate summit goal for poor states

EU leaders have set a baseline goal for an upcoming world climate summit of 100 billion euros a year by 2020 to help developing countries fight global warming, a draft text said Friday.

ActionAid activists demonstrate near the European Council headquarters in Brussels. EU leaders gather Friday to try to break a stalemate over how best to help poor countries fight global warming, just weeks before a key international climate meeting in Denmark. (AFP Photo)

"The EU is ready to take its fair share of the global effort by setting an ambitious mitigation target, allowing for offsets and providing its fair share of public support," said the text, drafted for a summit in Brussels.

"The European Council endorses the (EU) commission estimate that the total net incremental costs of mitigation and adaptation in developing countries could amount to around 100 billion euros annually by 2020," the draft said.

EU leaders broke off their talks overnight unable to agree on exactly how to share out the burden of helping poorer states reduce carbon dioxide emissions, just weeks ahead of the Copenhagen climate summit starting December 7.

But according to the draft, which could yet change, they agreed the baseline figure should "be met through a combination of (developing nations') own efforts, the international carbon market and international public finance.

The commission, the EU's executive arm, and Britain had previously recommended the 100 billion euro figure but it was unclear whether the leaders would take such a stand.

The 27-nation bloc prides itself in leading the fight against climate change, and has already agreed to cut greenhouse gas emissions by 20 percent by 2020, but many fear its leadership role could be compromised without a deal.

It is keen to enter international climate talks in Copenhagen speaking with a unified voice to encourage others, particularly the United States and China, to commit to swingeing emissions cuts.

But EU nations are split on how to fund their common ambitions.

Central and eastern European nations are reluctant to give aid to other countries, such as Brazil and China, which they deem to be no poorer than the poorest in Europe.

Others, like Germany, feel it premature to go into too much detail before Europe knows what the rest of the world proposes at the international climate talks.

Source: AFP

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