EC dispute may delay global action on CO2

Wrangling about the need for a mechanism to allocate national emission targets for greenhouse gases looks set to hamper the ratification of the global Convention on Climate Change by the EC and its Member States. The dispute may prove embarrassing in the wider international arena for the EC, which played a key role in the negotiations on the Convention but could now delay its entry into force.

Signed at this summer's Earth Summit, the Convention (ENDS Report 208, pp 19-22 ) allows countries to group together in order to take joint action to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions.

On the face of it, the EC is a prime candidate for joint action of this kind. At the end of 1990, Member States agreed th

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