Oct. 9, 2007

Unwritten Social Cohesion Pact?

The protocol and the tighter targets for developed countries being considered for the post 2012 period are rapidly losing favor as those few covered countries face the real costs - in terms of jobs and competitiveness - of meeting their 5 % (on average) reduction off 1990 levels of greenhouse gas emissions. That commitment typically equals a double digit reduction in energy use emissions in real 2005 terms. For example, the main organization representing European employers in Brussels, UNICE, recently released a report calling for a new approach: reducing emission intensity gradually rather than the targets and timetable approach long favored by the Greens and EU environmental regulators. (EU business has long been loathed to speak up on climate change policy for fear of being thought “against the environment” and not part of the unwritten social cohesion pact between government and industry.).

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