COPENHAGEN - All nations should set tougher goals for combating global warming at a U.N. summit and the rich should spell out how much aid they will give the poor by 2020, U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said on Wednesday.
We are just three days away from a final deal in Copenhagen. I am reasonably optimistic, Ban told Reuters Insider television during the December 7-18 conference, which is seeking a new U.N. deal to slow climate change.
I have been urging both developed and developing countries that they should all come on board. I think that they can and must do more, in terms of mitigation (curbing emissions), in terms of financial support packages, he said.
Financial support for developing countries is one of the keys in getting this deal agreed in Copenhagen, he said, denying a media report that he had given up a drive to get the summit to set a figure for aid by 2020.
Ban said a summit of more than 120 world leaders on Friday needed to work out mechanisms for raising aid, a formula for sharing it and decide how much money can be provided -- that means size of financial support. These are keys.
He said the exact amount was up to member states. Developing nations are insisting on a number but some rich nations say it will be hard to put in a figure -- such as $100 billion a year suggested by African nations by 2020.
Analysts say that a problem is that such a figure might discourage some U.S. Senators from passing carbon-capping laws. They may fear promising cash for other nations at a time of high domestic unemployment.
The United Nations also wants member states to come up with $10 billion a year from 2010-12 as a quick start for a deal to help developing nations cope with global warming that will bring more floods, droughts, mudslides and rising sea levels.
That is a good start but this is just a start, Ban said of the $10 billion goal.
Ban said the existing Kyoto Protocol, binding almost all developed nations to curb emissions until 2012, might be replaced by a new pact despite opposition from developing states who insist Kyoto should be extended.
We think that this Kyoto Protocol should remain in force as long as we continue our negotiations, he said.
Ideally speaking, if we can agree a comprehensive deal which can cover all the elements, that is fine. Otherwise, I think the Kyoto Protocol should continue, he said.
Climate change is happening and accelerating much much faster than one realizes, he said.
He also said that the world should set a goal of at least halving world greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. Developing nations led by China and India have opposed such a goal before rich nations make much deeper cuts in their emissions by 2050.
At a minimum, the member states should agree...cutting in half by 2050, he said.
He said he was encouraged that so many world leaders -- more than 120 -- were going to attend. He said that about 80 attended a climate summit in 2007, and about 100 this year in September. This is the largest ever, he said.