NEWS

Greece ‘signs pact’ to delay CO2 plan

A second Polish diplomat has confirmed the reported participation of Greece in an initiative being taken by a handful of relatively new European Union states aimed at stalling the EU’s plans for curbing global warming, Skai and Kathimerini have learned. According to Andrea Jankowski, a diplomat at Poland’s embassy in Athens, Environment and Public Works Minister Giorgos Souflias signed an accord with his Polish counterpart, Maciej Nowicki, at the end of last week calling for the postponement of EU measures aimed at cutting carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions by a fifth by 2020. The comments by Jankowski followed a statement by a spokesperson for Nowicki, Joanna Mackowiak. «(Nowicki) signed in Greece an agreement referring to the climate package… we have the blocking minority,» Mackowiak was cited by Reuters as saying late on Thursday. Under the EU’s voting rules, some decisions may be blocked by a certain number of member states representing enough voting power. In the case of the climate change plan, Poland is believed to have the backing of Hungary, Slovakia, Roman and Bulgaria as well as Greece. Some countries are trying to create a «front» in order to delay the implementation of EU measures, Barbara Helfferich, a spokesperson for European Environment Commissioner Stavros Dimas, told Skai. Asked to comment, Deputy Environment and Public Minister Stavros Kaloyiannis denied that Souflias had signed an accord with Poland but said that a meeting had taken place in Athens between the two ministers.