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G20 Cannes Summit Calls for Fossil Fuel Subsidy Phase-out and Successful Climate Negotiations

G204 November 2011: The Group of 20 (G20) Leader's Summit in Cannes concluded with the adoption of a declaration that addresses energy markets, green growth, and climate change, among other issues. Leaders called for rationalizing and phasing-out perverse fossil fuel subsidies, and reiterated their committment to a successful outcome at the upcoming 17th session of the Conference of the Parties (COP 17) to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), scheduled to take place in Durban, South Africa, at the end of the year.

The Summit, held in Cannes, France, on 3-4 November 2011, was attended by leaders of major economies. The resulting declaration, titled “Building our common future: renewed collective action for the benefit of all,” includes a section on "Improving the Functioning of Energy Markets," in which leaders stress the importance of, inter alia: well-functioning and transparent physical and financial energy markets, improved energy efficiency and better access to clean technologies. Leaders further commit to "promote sustainable development and green growth and to continue our efforts to face the challenge of climate change."

In the section on "Pursuing the Fight Against Climate Change," leaders call for the implementation of the Cancun agreements and further progress in all areas of negotiation, including the operationalization of the Green Climate Fund, as part of a balanced outcome in Durban. They further indicate that "financing the fight against climate change" is one of their main priorities.

Addressing the 2011 Labour Summit in Cannes, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon highlighted that the 2012 UN Conference on Sustainable Development (UNCSD, or Rio+20) provides an opportunity to define "a clear path to a better future," including through new initiatives on food and water security, as well as green investments to advance on renewable energy to mitigate climate change. He emphasized that "We cannot burn our way to the future. We cannot consume our way to greater prosperity." [The Declaration] [UN Press Release] [Ban's Remarks]