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UK expected to exceed Kyoto emission targets
16 Oct 208

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The UK is projected to better its Kyoto Protocol commitments for reducing or limiting emissions of greenhouse gases, the Commission's annual progress report on emissions shows. The latest projections indicate that the UK will overshoot its 12.5% reduction target by 7.5% through a combination of policies and measures already taken, the purchase of emission credits from projects in third countries, and forestry activities that absorb carbon from the atmosphere. The UK is expected to achieve a 20% reduction in emissions by 2010 compared to its Kyoto base year emissions (776.3 million tonnes of carbon emissions).

Environment Commissioner Stavros Dimas said: “The latest projections are good news. They show that Europe's coordinated action to reach the Kyoto targets is working. But Kyoto is only the first step: now the world needs a new international climate agreement that incorporates the ambitious emissions cuts Europe has set itself for 2020 and beyond. For this reason the additional measures that EU member states plan need to be implemented, and the Commission's climate change and energy package needs to be approved by the European Parliament and Council, without delay. "

Kyoto commitments
Under the Kyoto Protocol, the 15 countries which were EU member states when the Protocol was agreed (the EU-15) are committed to reducing their collective greenhouse gas emissions in the period 2008-2012 to 8% below levels in a chosen base year (1990 in most cases). This collective commitment has been translated into differentiated national emission targets for each EU-15 member state which are binding under EU law.

There is no collective target for EU-27 emissions. Ten of the twelve member states which joined the EU in 2004 and 2007 have individual commitments under the Protocol to reduce their emissions to 6% or 8% below base year levels by 2008-2012. Only Cyprus and Malta have no emission target.

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Source: European Commission - The EU in the United Kingdom