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EU Ministers Seek Study on Climate Aid From Airlines, Ships

European Union finance ministers asked the bloc’s regulator to analyze how putting a price on greenhouse gases from global aviation and shipping could help raise funds to protect the climate.

Carbon pricing would generate a signal to cut pollution more efficiently and has the potential to generate “large financing flows,” ministers from the 27-nation EU said in a statement today, after a meeting in Brussels that included a discussion on financing the battle against global warming.

Ministers invited the European Commission, the bloc’s regulatory arm, “to prepare a reflection paper by June on carbon pricing of global aviation and maritime transportation” taking into account developments at the International Maritime Organization and International Civil Aviation Organization, according to the statement published on the EU website.

The United Nations agencies have been unable to agree on measures to curb emissions from ships for more than a decade. The EU, which runs the world’s biggest carbon trading system, expanded its carbon curbs to include aviation at the start of this year and has said it may present its own proposal to limit shipping pollution if IMO doesn’t find a solution.

Ministers also committed to continue work with other nations and institutions to determine ways to raise $100 billion a year in aid that rich states have promised by 2020 to help poorer countries protect climate, according to the statement.

Last year a UN conference in Durban, South Africa, approved an instrument governing the so-called Green Climate Fund to channel climate aid.

“We are happy to see finance ministers support efforts to get the Green Climate Fund up and running,” Meera Ghani, an expert at Climate Action Network, said by e-mail today. “All EU member States must make substantial pledges before the next UN climate conference in Qatar, at the end of this year.”

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