Wednesday, July 9, 2008

World must aim for 90pc emissions cut: climate lawyer

ABC News Online, Posted 6 hours 18 minutes ago 

Updated 6 hours 6 minutes ago

An Australian climate lawyer says the G8 nations' commitment to a 50 per cent cut in global greenhouse gas emissions would require a much bigger reduction target for industrialised nations.

Countries agreed at the G8 summit to a "vision" of halving greenhouse gas emissions by 2050.

Andrew McIntosh from the ANU's Climate Law and Policy centre says if this commitment is carried through, it would need a very significant reduction.

"Countries like Australia and the US will have to start out with cuts of at least 90 per cent for 2050, and if they want to have less reductions than that they will have to buy them from the developing world," he said.

Tony Mohr from the Australian Conservation Foundation (ACF) says the United Nations has already recognised countries must cut emissions based on their capabilities

"Australia needs to join with other countries in recognising that national emission reductions need to be allocated on a per person basis and that takes into account the fact that in China per capita emissions are very low, but in Australia they are very high and targets need to reflect that difference," he said.

A firm global target is not expected until the UN Copenhagen conference in 2009.

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