» Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Climate Change

Asked if we recognised the Guardian’s story this morning about being close to persuading President Bush on a 5 point climate change plan, the PMOS replied that as he had said this morning, what we were seeking at the G8 was a general consensus and a way forward. That must include not just Europe, but also the US and the developing countries, including India and China. The end point of this negotiation is G8, and not this week, but obviously, this was a stepping stone to the G8.

Asked if we were acting in tandem with Chancellor Merkel on this, the PMOS replied that whilst everybody was aware where each other’s position was, it was a question of how the point of consensus was approached. The important thing was that the point the judge whether that had been achieved or not was at G8, not this week.

Asked if there was a sense from the Prime Minister that although his relationship with the US had been the subject of quite serious criticism over the past couple of years, was there a thought that there could be some good had from the relationship, the PMOS said that he would answer the question by using substance, not process. Nobody seriously argued now other than the Gleneagles G8 was a defining moment because of the world’s debate on subjects such as climate change and Africa. The key question that came out of Gleneagles was: could that debate and progress be sustained? On Africa, it was being sustained, although we needed to keep everybody up to the mark on that, and in terms of concrete deliverables, the G8 this year we hoped would further answer that cause. In terms of climate change, if people looked at where the debate on Europe was now compared to where it was at Gleneagles, it was virtually unrecognisable, as we had moved forward. The PMOS continued to say that there were other areas of the world, and the US was not alone in this, as India and China were also involved, where we needed to ask the same question. The time to answer that would be at the G8 in Germany in June, so this week was part of that process of building up to that.

Briefing took place at 15:00 | Search for related news

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