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Signs of progress as EU leaders meet to haggle over climate target

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Signs of progress towards a new European Union climate target emerged ahead of a summit on Thursday with a draft plan by leaders to bring Poland on board and acceptance of the goal by the Czech Republic under certain conditions.

The leaders’ discussion in Brussels will be their first talks on upgrading the existing EU target of a 40% cut in greenhouse gas emissions by 2030. Their two-day summit is likely to push a decision to December.

The EU’s executive, the European Commission, has said the bloc needs a cut of at least 55% by 2030, against 1990 levels, to achieve the goal of net zero emissions by 2050 that all 27 nations bar coal-dependent Poland have committed to.

“If we set a very clear and a high target of 55%, it effectively gives certainty to industry that there will be a guaranteed market for solutions and services and products,” Latvian Prime Minister Krisjanis Karins told reporters on arrival for the summit.

Such investments could include clean transport and renewable energy, he said.

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