China's Wen tells EU to stick to current climate pact
China will insist key global climate change negotiations next month build on current treaties that limit the obligations of poor countries in controlling greenhouse gas emissions, Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao said, Reuters reported.
In a phone call with European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso on Monday, Wen said the December meeting in Copenhagen to forge a new pact on global warming should stick to the U.N. Framework Convention on Climate Change and the Kyoto Protocol, the official People's daily reported on Tuesday.
The Kyoto Protocol is the treaty formed under the Convention that governs nations' efforts to fight climate change up to the end of 2012, and the talks in Copenhagen are about creating a successor.
The European Union says it wants to widen Kyoto, which does not bind emerging economies such as China, the world's biggest emitter of carbon dioxide, the main greenhouse gas, and would rather craft a new pact than extend and add to Kyoto.
But Wen said Beijing will not agree to a new pact that erases the distinction Kyoto makes between rich countries, which must accept binding emissions caps, and developing ones, which must take action on emissions but do not take on binding targets.
"The key to whether the (Copenhagen) meeting can achieve success is adhering to the (UN) Convention and the Protocol, holding to the principle of common but differentiated responsibilities," Wen told Barroso.
Negotiators should "prevent the relevant negotiations from deviating from the principles and stipulations of the Convention and Protocol", Wen added.
The Chinese premier's remarks were an amplification of his government's established position [ID:nSP379681]. But with the Copenhagen meeting just over a month off, they underscored the divisions that could hinder agreement.
Later this month, China and the EU are also to hold a summit also likely to focus on climate change.
The 27-country EU has pledged to cut its own emissions to 20 percent below 1990 levels by 2020, and to increase cuts to 30 percent if other rich regions take similar action.
Chinese President Hu Jintao has said his country will cut its carbon dioxide emissions for every unit of economic output by a "notable margin" by 2020 compared to 2005.