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U.N. Chief Backs Al Gore on Climate Change

by Pamela Leavey

Ban Ki-moon, the U.N.’s Secretary-General said on Friday that he intends to utilize “Al Gore’s “very powerful political message” on climate change to mobilize international awareness and political support for international action on global warming.”

Ban said that during a meeting early Friday morning the former U.S. vice-president, whose climate change documentary “An Inconvenient Truth” recently won two Academy Awards, offered to help the United Nations tackle the problem.

“He offered strong support and commitment to work very closely with me, and I am going to fully use his very powerful political message to mobilize political will and thus enhance the awareness of the international community with this issue,” the secretary-general said.

Ban also reiterated yesterday “that addressing the global warming problem will be one of his top priorities as secretary-general.”

I am going to take an important role in mobilizing political will in close coordination with the European Commission when I attend the G-8 Summit meeting in June,” Ban said. “This will be one of the important agenda (items).”

Last month, European Union leaders promised to cut their own carbon dioxide emissions by 20 percent below 1990 levels, increasing to 30 percent if other countries — particularly the United States — joined them. They say this is needed to keep global temperature increases to below two degrees.

Ban commended the EU’s voluntary cuts, which he called “a very important initiative with which I would like to continue to cooperate fully.”

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