This was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government
21 November 2011
Your article, “Rich Nations ‘give up’ on new climate treaty until 2020” (Monday 21st November), is a wholesale misrepresentation of the UK’s position. The UK would like to see a global treaty signed straight away but the reality is that some of the biggest economies, both developed and developing, are not yet ready. We aim at Durban to reach agreement on the need for a new treaty and to set out a timetable for its negotiation, concluding no later than 2015.
The UK and our EU partners are also ready to agree to a second commitment period of the Kyoto Protocol, as long as this is accompanied by a hard commitment from the other major economies to a comprehensive global legal framework and to complete negotiations on it as soon as possible.
This timeframe will of course have to be discussed in Durban, but we recognise that global emissions will need to be peaking by 2020 in order for dangerous temperature rises to be avoided.
I will be setting out the UK’s position in full in a speech at Imperial College in London on Thursday.
The Rt Hon Chris Huhne MP
Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change