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EU climate policy: time to come down to earth

For many years, the EU pursued the strategy of ‘leading by example’ in international climate negotiations. However, since the Copenhagen climate summit, frictions inside the EU and a paradigm shift have become increasingly evident, write Severin Fischer and Oliver Geden of the influential German Institute for International and Security Affairs (SWP)...
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India, China urge rich nations to cut carbon deeper

Developed countries must lead emissions curbs and make good on finance pledge say emerging economies key to climate pact. Rich countries need to take the lead in cutting greenhouse gas emissions, the leaders of India and China have said in an unusual joint statement. Released at the end of two days of talks between Narendra Modi and Xi Jinping, it says developing countries...
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Quote of the Month

“Beyond borders, climate change can stoke international conflict over the control of vital and increasingly scarce resources — particularly water.” - Laurent Fabius, France Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Development, Op-Ed in the New York Times, 24 April 2015.
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ECC Newsletter Edition 1/2015

We have published the first edition of the Environment, Conflict, and Cooperation Newsletter in 2015. Read how foreign policy makers can use opportunities for green job creation to promote ambitious climate action, about linkages between climate change and fragility in Africa, or how climate change exacerbates conflicts between mining and herding in Mongolia.
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Policies & Initiatives

Green Diplomacy Network

The Thessaloniki European Council agreed to launch an initiative aimed at promoting the integration of environment into external relations through the creation of an informal network of environment experts within foreign ministries, the so-called Green Diplomacy Network. This was one of the elements included in the strategy on environmental integration in external policies adopted by the Barcelona General Affairs Council in March 2002. In essence, the main tasks of the network will be: 

Firstly, in line with the Action Plan and with comments made since by Member States, the Network should promote the use of the EU's extensive diplomatic resources (diplomatic missions, development cooperation offices) in support of environmental objectives, orchestrating campaigns and demarches that bring the EU messages to third parties all over the world, gathering also our partners' views. The network could help create a new "culture" by introducing points relating to the multilateral agenda more systematically into regular bilateral discussions. 

Secondly, in line with the European Council's basic mandate of promoting the integration of environment into external relations, the network should consider how foreign ministries are integrating environmental concerns into their working processes across the spectrum. This could start with simple but useful information exchanges, such as on how Member States and the Commission are organised in capitals and abroad to channel their efforts in the field of environment. In the longer term, it may be appropriate to identify best practices and potential synergies. The coordination of the network resides in each Presidency in full association with the Commission. The European Commission's participation in the network will be essential to guarantee its effectiveness, inter alia, by ensuring continuity and by making substantial contributions, such as briefings on specific topics. A report on the first two years of the network's operation will be presented to the European Council in 2005. 

For more information, please see http://ec.europa.eu/external_relations/environment/gdn/index_en.htm