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Tony Blair can play a useful role in combating global warming

Comments on Tony Blair “Seven proven policies that will help build a cleaner planet”, 6/07/2009, http://www.theaustralian.news.com.au/story/0,25197,25737023-5013480,00.html

Mr Blair’s arguments are clear and powerful. They indicate that ambitious goals of emission reductions are not only desirable and inevitable, but perfectly achievable.

While the long term goals of much higher reductions by 2050 are important themselves, the most important step is the intermediate goals for 2020. For the 2020 goals, a workable and effective international agreement to be negotiated late this year in Copenhagen will be essential.

Now there are enormous momentums towards that agreement, following the US landmark bill passed by its House of Representatives recently. Once the US joins the international community’s efforts, most things will fall into order. Europe should continue to lead the international efforts as it has done in the past.

This will not only send powerful and unambiguous signals to every country and the private sector, but also remove an important stumbling block for developing countries to join in. Innovations from the private sector assisted by government policies will find new ways to reduce emissions at much lower costs and make the reduction tasks easier to achieve.

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