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EU at the UN

The EU's commitment to effective multilateralism, with the UN at its core, is a central element of its external action. As a UN observer with enhanced status, the EU delegation coordinates with its 28 Member States to speak with one voice. The EU also works closely with the UN secretariat and its agencies, funds & programmes, partnering on a range of global issues and challenges.

Mr President, Excellencies, Ladies and Gentlemen,

I would like to thank the Indonesian Government for hosting this Conference.

We have been given a clear message by the IPCC’s Fourth Assessment Report. We need to act fast.

If we ignore the science we do so at our peril. Climate change is already making itself felt and we know it will become more severe. None of our countries will be spared.

Our citizens,, are looking to us to take the bold action needed to prevent climate change from reaching dangerous levels. The breakthrough must come here in Bali.

– We must agree to launch negotiations on a global and comprehensive climate change agreement for the post-2012 era.

– We must set a deadline for completing the negotiations by the end of 2009 so we can bring it into force before the end of 2012.

– And we must define a ‘Bali Roadmap’ that sets out the key building blocks of the future agreement.

The European Community is adamant that the ambition must be to limit global warming to no more than 2 degrees Celsius above the pre-industrial temperature.

This is not only necessary. Our analysis concurs with the IPCC that it is also technologically feasible and economically affordable.

Developed countries have the moral obligation – and the necessary resources – to take the lead in making this shift towards a low-carbon global economy.

The development and deployment of clean technologies will be crucial. But we believe this will happen on the scale necessary only if we set clear emissions targets that all actors can work towards.

It is therefore essential that developed countries take on binding commitments to reduce their greenhouse gases in absolute terms. The European Community is ready to commit to a 30% reduction below 1990 levels by 2020 if other developed countries commit to comparable efforts.

We cannot win this battle without the help of developing countries, particularly those that are most advanced. But let me stress that those contributions must fully reflect the principle of common but differentiated responsibilities and respective capabilities. The European Community wants to work with developing countries to help them reduce their emissions growth.

Over the past week and a half our negotiators have laid solid foundations for reaching consensus here. But the most important decisions remain to be taken by us over the next three days. It is we, and we alone, who will determine whether the Bali Roadmap is ambitious enough to prevent climate change from reaching dangerous levels.

The European Community looks forward to working under your guidance, Mr President, to ensure that this essential objective is met. We literally cannot afford to fail.

Thank you.

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