EU urges Brazil, India to submit 'without delay' climate summit targets

BRUSSELS - EU Commissioner Miguel Arias Canete on Thursday urged India, Indonesia, Argentina, Brazil and other big countries to immediately submit their emissions reductions targets for the UN climate summit in Paris later this year.

"Key G20 countries such as Argentina, Brazil, India, Indonesia, Saudi Arabia, South Africa and Turkey must submit their intended contributions without delay," Canete told a press conference in Brussels.

In March, the European Union, the world's third biggest emitter, became one of the first blocs or countries to formally submit its pledge to the United Nations.

The second biggest polluter the United States and the number one emitter China have also submitted their pledges in the last few months.

"The current contributions have not just come from biggest emitters including China, the US and the EU but also from some of most vulnerable countries from Africa, the Caribbean and the Pacific," Canete said.

So far he said 56 countries representing 61 per cent of emissions have handed in their pledges.

The "not so good news" is they only represent just over a quarter of all the countries, he added.

He said the failure so far of so many G20 countries to submit their pledges made it difficult to calculate the "aggregate" cuts needed to limit global warming to no more than two degrees Celsius (3.6 degrees Fahrenheit) over pre-industrial levels.

The calculation needs to be done quickly, he said, to "know where we stand" before the climate conference, which kicks off in around 100 days in the French capital.

He also said that while governments have increasingly demonstrated the "political will" to reach an agreement, "in the negotiating room progress has been painfully slow."

The European Union has tried to lead by example since its member states last October agreed to cut emissions by 40 per cent by 2030 over a benchmark of 1990, a binding target that Canete hails as the world's "most ambitious."

The Paris conference from November 30 to December 11 seeks to crown a six-year wrangle in the 195-nation UNFCCC with a post-2020 pact on curbing greenhouse gases.

"Paris needs to send a credible signal the world is serious about fighting climate change," Canete warned.

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