Govt to Push Climate Change at G20 Talks

JAKARTA ~ President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono will urge major world leaders to put tackling climate change at the centre of the G20 summit this week, a spokesman said.

Yudhoyono left for the United States in the hope of pushing climate change to the centre of the agenda of the meeting in Pittsburgh ahead of global climate talks in the Danish capital Copenhagen, spokesman Dino Patti Djalal said.

“A point that he will address is that amid this global (economic) crisis, we should never abandon climate change as the Copenhagen climate change conference approaches in December,” Djalal said.

“Let’s not allow world leaders from major nations, which are the majority of the world’s emitters, gather in Pittsburgh and there not be a statement about climate change,” he said.

“So there will be a push in the direction of a conclusion or consensus for Copenhagen,” he said.

Djalal hailed signs of a nascent recovery in the world economy and said the G20 meet, which includes major developing countries as well as traditional G8 grouping of large developed economies, should be made into a permanent forum.

“Why? Because we have seen the G20 forum as the place to maintain world resilience, which has previously only been handled by America, Europe and Japan, but now is being handled by the G7 and G8 nations, plus new developing nations and emerging economies,” he said.

Indonesia has been among the countries that have fared best during the economic crisis and is targeting 4.5 percent growth for this year.

The country hosted climate change talks in Bali in 2007 and has been a key advocate for ambitious plans to help avert climate change by paying countries to conserve carbon-absorbing forests.

However Indonesia remains one of the leading forest destroyers, with emissions from the clearing of rainforests and peatlands making it the world’s third-largest greenhouse gas emitter, according to some estimates.

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