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Senator Wong attends key climate meetings in US.

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PW 265/09 15 September 2009


Minister for Climate Change and Water, Senator Penny Wong, will depart Australia tomorrow to attend the Major Economies Forum on Energy and Climate in Washington DC.

The Forum - an initiative of the Obama administration - comes at a critical time for negotiations in the lead up to the United Nations climate change conference in Copenhagen. The Copenhagen conference commences in less than 90 days, on December 7.

In total, 17 developed and developing nations, representing around 80 per cent of the world’s emissions, will attend the Forum to progress discussions on how to reach an effective post-2012 climate change outcome.

“This year’s climate change conference in Copenhagen is a unique opportunity to achieve the effective international political agreement we need to tackle climate change,’’ Senator Wong said.

“But it will be tough. The world still has a very long way to go.

“A global agreement on climate change will require the world to come together in a way it simply has never done before.

“Australia is working hard to achieve the best possible outcome at Copenhagen.’’

Senator Wong will meet with key members of the Obama administration, including US Special Envoy for Climate Change Todd Stern.

Senator Wong will also visit New York City, where she will participate in the United Nations Secretary General’s High Level Event on Climate Change, and give major speeches at New York University and the Asia Society.

In New York, Senator Wong will join ministerial counterparts from around the world at the Danish-hosted Greenland Dialogue.