Oslo: Former UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan addressed global challenges on 20 April, before Norway’s governing Labour Party, which has vowed to reduce the country’s net greenhouse gas emissions to zero by 2050.
Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg, the Labour Party leader, said that Norway would be the first country in the world to set such an ambitious goal.
Stoltenberg’s three-point plan presented at the party’s annual congress calls for reducing pollution by 10% points more than promised under the Kyoto Agreement by 2012, a 30% emissions cut by 2020 and lowering net emissions to zero by 2050. The last goal would be obtained by using cleaner technology at home, buying carbon quotas abroad and helping developing countries build clean energy sources, such as wind and solar power.
“I am doing this because climate change is crucial,” Stoltenberg told his party, which is expected to approve the proposal. “The greenhouse effect concerns all people. It is the most dangerous environmental problem.”
Labour’s junior partners in the coalition government, the Socialist Left and the Centre Party support the first goal of cutting emissions by 30% within 13 years, but have not yet agreed to the two other proposals.
Climate change was the central topic at Labour’s national congress, which sets party policy. Annan and former Norwegian Prime Minister Gro Harlem Brundtland, who lead the UN commission that released the groundbreaking environmental report “Our Common Future” in 1987, were addressing delegates on climate threat.