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Poland to nix EU's 2050 climate targets: report
by Staff Writers
Warsaw (AFP) March 7, 2012

Poland is threatening to veto European Union 2050 targets for emissions reductions at a Friday meeting of the bloc's environment ministers in Brussels, a Polish media report said Wednesday.

The Polish PAP news agency quoted an unnamed government source saying Warsaw was prepared to veto a proposal by the EU's current Danish presidency setting forth the European Commission's CO2 emission goals up to 2050.

According to the PAP, Poland will also veto the jointly agreed EU position for global climate talks.

Environment Minister Marcin Korolec went on the record saying as Poland would refuse to accept any additional EU emissions restrictions up to 2020 and insisted it would be premature to set any future limits now.

"We do not agree to any higher EU (emissions) reduction target in the 2020 perspective. Defining future climate policy now, before we know what will happen in the global talks, is very premature," Korolec said, quoted by the PAP.

An ex-communist country of 38 million which joined the European Union in 2004, Poland, currently relies on greenhouse gas-belching coal-fired plants for over 90 percent of its electricity, but has committed to easing its near total dependence on fossil fuels as part of the EU's climate package limiting greenhouse gas emissions by 2020.

Warsaw plans to meet the 2020 EU emission targets by introducing atomic energy in almost equal measure with renewables as well as so-called Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS) technologies to sequester carbon dioxide emissions from coal-fired power facilities.

Official statistics show Poland's coal sector employed 178,000 people as of September 2010.

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