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Senator Wong in Argentina for climate change talks.

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PW 179/08 14 September 2008


Minister for Climate Change and Water, Senator Penny Wong, will attend a Ministerial Dialogue on Climate Change in Argentina from 15-18 September.

The meeting, known as the ‘Southern Lights’ dialogue, is the fourth in a series of annual dialogues that aims to accelerate progress in the United Nation negotiations towards a new international agreement on tackling climate change.

“These meetings bring together a small number of ministers from key countries to exchange thoughts, build confidence, and forge ideas to build momentum towards a global solution on climate change,” Senator Wong said.

“Australia’s participation highlights our influence in efforts to help shape that global solution.

“Our goal is to play an active role in generating consensus around key elements to guide a new global agreement on climate change.

“In Argentina, our discussions will focus on many of the issues central to the United Nations climate change negotiations.

“I will also meet with key counterparts from a range of other countries to discuss issues relevant to negotiations and to update them about the Rudd Government’s work in tackling climate change.”

This year's Dialogue will take place in the Patagonian town of El Calafate, near the Upsala and Perito Moreno Glaciers.

The location was chosen to highlight first-hand some of the impacts of climate change.

Patagonia has experienced a steep increase in average temperature during the second half of the 20th Century and many of its famous glaciers are rapidly receding.