Tuesday, 02 Dec, 2008 Environment
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Ecological Summit in Poland Discusses Ways of Fighting Climate Change

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The United Nations opened this year's ecological summit in Poznan which will last till the 12th of December. As delegates said at the opening on Monday, fighting global warming should become a priority for every country even in conditions of economic crisis.

"Our work on the natural environment should be timeless irrespective of the economic situation," said Polish Prime Minister Donald Tusk emphasizing the importance of the problem.

Climate talks in Poland gathered about 10,700 delegates from 187 nations including representatives from government and non-governmental organizations. They're going to discuss major environmental problems and consider ways of their solution. However, reduction of poisonous emissions remains the central question at the summit. The participants will also discuss means of rainforest protection.

This ecological conference should create the basis for signing a new climate treaty in Copenhagen which will come into force after expiration of the Kyoto Protocol in 2012.

As Fogh Rasmussen, prime minister of Denmark, pointed out, financial crisis should not be an obstacle to environmental protection as it's an issue of primary importance.

"The EU countries are ready to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 30 percent in 2020 as part of the global agreement," said Rasmussen.

However, Poland is in no haste to make ample promises as it depends greatly on coal-fired energy. It gets 93% of its energy from burning coal. Poland was awarded with a "Fossil of the Day" which is given to the most obstructing delegation.

A special interest was drawn to the position of the United States. It is worth mentioning that George Bush refused to sign the Kyoto Protocol considering it unprofitable for economy as the country was among the world leaders in production of carbon dioxide. The president-elect Barack Obama suggested a new approach to the problem and was praised for his "ambitious" plans to reduce emissions of greenhouse gases to the level of 1990. Now their emissions are 14 percent above the standard, reported Reuters.

"I am delighted to see that Obama is planning ambitious climate and energy policies," said Rasmussen.

It should be mentioned that officials from Bush administration will represent the United States at the summit.

The position of China in negotiations is also of great importance. The country produces considerable amounts of carbon dioxide and is often blamed for its traditional industry which is the main source of poisonous substances. Chinese authorities lay the blame on European countries where the amount of emissions is considerably greater.

Naturally, the financial crisis couldn't escape observations as it influences climate change to a considerable degree.

"The financial crisis also means that less capital available on international market," said Yvo de Boer, head of the U.N. Climate Change Secretariat. Nevertheless, he underlines the necessity of fighting global warming.

Source: http://www.reuters.com/article/environmentNews/idUSTRE4AT1K420081201?pageNumber=1&virtualBrandChannel=10112
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