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G8 Summit

What G8 means for Copenhagen

At the G8 Summit in L’Aquila, Italy, the G8 issued a declaration that demonstrated their commitment and strong leadership on climate change - helping build the political momentum necessary to secure an ambitious post 2012 climate change deal in Copenhagen. G8 Family photo 2009 (Crown Copyright)

Key achievements by the G8 include:

  • Real progress from last year’s Summit in Toyako, Japan, by recognising for the first time that the increase in global average temperature above pre-industrial levels ought not exceed 2 degrees C
  • A reaffirmed willingness to share with all countries the goal of at least a 50% reduction of global emissions by 2050, recognising that this implies that global emissions need to peak as soon as possible and decline thereafter
  • For first time, commitment to a developed country goal of reducing emissions by 80% or more by 2050 compared to 1990 or more recent years
  • Commitment to undertaking robust mid-term reductions, whilst at the same time recognising that the major emerging economies will need to collectively reduce their emissions significantly below business as usual. This will help ensure the ambitious long term objectives are achieved

The G8 also agreed some key principles for climate finance, which underpin the UK position as set out in the Prime Minister's speech on 26 June. In this speech, the PM showed real leadership on this crucial issue and the UK will continue to encourage ambitious outcomes on the road to Copenhagen.

Related links:

2009 G8 website

Ed Miliband on G8

'This is a very important step forward in the negotiations and shows the politics catching up with the science of climate change. From now on, both developed and developing countries will have to demonstrate that their actions and commitments are consistent with this scientific framework. This will define the way governments have to deal with climate change not just in the coming months but for future generations.'