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UNEP Addresses Meeting on Black Carbon

22 June 2010: The UN Environment Programme (UNEP) Spokesperson, Nick Nuttall, addressed a meeting and panel discussion at the European Parliament on Black Carbon, stressing that “we do know enough to act.”

Nuttall provided an overview of UNEP's involvement in investigating the science of the Black Carbon issue. He highlighted the UNEP-sponsored Project Atmospheric Brown Cloud, which he said was helping to bring the science "to a point of maturity that can allow policy makers to begin to act."

Drawing parallels between Black Carbon and other non-carbon dioxide pollutants, such as those controlled under the Montreal Protocol, Nuttall said Black Carbon offered potential quick wins in areas including climate change and public health. He stressed that, while carbon dioxide must remain the overarching target for addressing climate change, "supporting action on Black Carbon by rapidly developing economies could deliver quick wins." Nuttall suggested that such action would demonstrate developing countries are serious about being part of the solution to climate change, and simultaneously “buy time” for developed countries to prove they are serious about cutting carbon dioxide emissions. [UNEP Press Release]