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Russian support for Kyoto Protocol places renewed onus on EU

1 October, 2004

Sinn Féin MEP Bairbre de Brún has said that the pledge by Russia to adhere to the Kyoto Protocol was a "welcome step which places renewed pressure upon the EU to show strong leadership on the issue".

Ms de Brún made her comments after the Russian Government recommended that Russia should fully adopt the Kyoto Protocol, which aims to combat global warming and harmful emissions.

Speaking today, Ms de Brún said:

"I welcome the commitments made by the Russian Government to sign up to the Kyoto protocol. However, a commitment to reduce harmful emissions should not be used as a justification for the use of nuclear energy as an alternative. The issue of global warming is a global problem, which requires governments to show strong leadership and make difficult choices.

"The commitment made by the Russian Government places renewed pressure on the EU to show strong leadership on the issue. There is a growing concern at the lack of progress made by member states in the submission of their national emissions targets as required under the EU Emissions Trading Directive.

"Sinn Féin also calls upon the EU to keep to the agreed timeframe for implementation of the Kyoto Protocol and supports the introduction of carbon taxes on industrial energy users to generate behavioural change in favour of lower emitting fuels.

"Sinn Féin calls upon all industrialised nations to sign up to the Kyoto Protocol as a matter of extreme urgency. In particular the United States must reverse its decision to opt out of the agreement." ENDS

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