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Brussels, 20 April 2005

Commissioner Dimas hopeful about new phase in EU-US relations on climate change

Two days of meetings between the EU Troika and key decision-makers on Capitol Hill have provided a new opening for EU-US co-operation on climate change. The EU troika, represented by Mr Lux, Minister of the Environment of Luxemburg, Lord Whitty, representing the future British presidency and Commissioner Dimas held extensive talks with Paula Dobriansky, chief US negotiator on climate change and a number of key US policy-makers including James Connaughton, chair of the White House Council on Environment Quality. Both sides agreed that climate change presented a major challenge for policy makers now and in the future.

“We moved beyond discussing technological innovation. We explored ways of future co-operation which include issues such as energy efficiency, renewables, the use of market-based instruments and adaptation measures,” said Commissioner Dimas in Washington.

“The results of these talks could well mark the beginning of a new phase of US-EU co-operation on climate change. We are ready to seriously discuss with our American partners the future of an international climate change regime after 2012,“ added the Commissioner.

Concretely, agreement was reached to re-launch the EU-US high level group bringing together EU-US representatives to discuss policies combating climate change, and a broader environmental agenda.

Commissioner Dimas left Washington on Tuesday traveling to New York to attend the 13th session of the UN Commission on Sustainable Development which will take place between the 20th and 23rd of April 2005.

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