4 Dec 2010

Groser being helped by India at climate talks

6:20 pm on 4 December 2010

New Zealand Climate Change Minister Tim Groser says he has been bolstered by help from India in his task at the United Nation's climate talks in Cancun, Mexico. The talks are now in their fifth day.

Mr Groser's job is to get countries not signed to the Kyoto Protocol to explain how they are going to tackle climate change.

The conference is the final set of talks for 2010, after a UN summit in Copenhagen last December failed to agree on revised Kyoto Protocol emission limits.

The Cancun talks are less ambitious, hoping to develop the Copenhagen Accord and reach a consensus with all nations on how to tackle climate change.

Mr Groser says Mexico's government has asked him to find out what big developing countries and the United States, who are not signatories to the Kyoto Protocol, are willing to do to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

He says India's Environment Minister Jairam Ramesh has offered advice and help in brokering the discussions.

He says that despite being 20 years behind China, India is the next emerging superpower and he could not do his task without its insight into developing nations.

Executive director of the Greenhouse Policy Coalition David Venables is also at the meeting. The coalition represents major energy users in New Zealand.

Mr Venables says the host nation is working hard behind the scenes to get the best possible deal.

He says a UN climate change meeting in Copenhagen a year ago was not well run and the Mexican organisers of this year's talks are determined to show the Cancun meetings have been constructive.

Mr Venables says he believes no one with any common sense expects a binding agreement at Cancun but he still hopes the talks can set targets for next year's meeting in South Africa.