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EU Should Target 30% Emissions Reduction by 2020, Hendry Says

The European Union should tighten climate change targets to reduce emissions by 30 percent from 1990 levels by 2020, from its current 20 percent reduction goal, U.K. Minister of State for Energy Charles Hendry said.

“We believe it can be done in a very realistic way without imposing significantly greater costs on consumers,” Hendry said in an interview in Doha, Qatar today. “We’re keen to move it to 30 percent.”

Negotiators meeting at the United Nations global climate summit in Cancun, Mexico, last week failed to agree on emission-reduction targets. The delegates did endorse a package including a fund that would manage a “significant share” of the $100 billion annually pledged last year in aid for poorer nations by 2020 and a plan to reduce deforestation.

The U.K. has pledged to get 15 percent of its energy from renewable sources by 2020 and reduce carbon-dioxide emissions by 80 percent from 1990 levels by 2050. Achieving this will require as much as 40,000 megawatts of low-carbon energy projects and a “radical reform” of the electricity markets, according to a Dec. 7 Committee on Climate Change report.

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