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European Council Approves Climate Change Deal

Nicolas Sarkozy, the President of the French Republic, presided over the European Council held in Brussels on 11 and 12 December 11 December 2008: The European Council met in Brussels, Belgium, from 11-12 December 2008, and reached agreement on an energy and climate change package. It is anticipated that the package will be finalized with the European Parliament by the end of 2008.

This package will implement the energy and climate commitments

entered into by the EU in March 2007 and March 2008, especially the

target of a 20% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by 2020. In its

conclusions, the European Council confirms the EU's commitment to

increasing this reduction to 30% within the framework of an ambitious

and comprehensive global agreement in Copenhagen on climate change for

the period after 2012 on condition that the other developed countries

undertake to achieve comparable emission reductions and that the

economically more advanced developing countries make a contribution

commensurate with their respective responsibilities and capabilities.

The Commission will present to the European Council in March 2010 a

detailed analysis of the results of the Copenhagen Conference,

including the move from 20% to 30% reduction. On this basis, the

European Council will make an assessment of the situation, including

its effects on the competitiveness of European industry and other

economic sectors. The plan was welcomed by UNFCCC Executive Secretary

Yvo de Boer as a sign of “developed countries' resolve and courage that

the world has been waiting for in Poznań.” [Conclusions of the European Council] [UN Press Release] [UNFCCC Press Release]