EU ‘breakthrough’ on climate change offer

By Alex Stevenson

The European Union will make a conditional offer to the rest of the world on its climate change commitment, Gordon Brown has claimed, despite a rift developing over which member states should pay for the assistance.

The leaders’ summit is endorsing the view that an annual payment of 100 billion euros should be paid to developing countries to help them adapt to climate change and cut down their own carbon emissions.

But it is less clear which countries should pay for it. Nine smaller EU countries have joined together to demand that the richer EU states contribute more to the deal.

Mr Brown remained upbeat. “I think this is a breakthrough that takes us forward to Copenhagen and makes a Copenhagen agreement possible,” he said.

“Europe is today showing even more leadership than before.”

Agreeing a unified stance on climate change finance will prove a key test of the European Union in the run-up to December’s crucial climate change talks in Copenhagen.