Climate talks open

November 2, 1998, 08:00 CET

The fourth conference of the parties to the UN convention on climate change opens in Buenos Aires today, with a Statoil observer present.

"We're hoping that this meeting can move a step forward, particularly in drawing up an action plan for specific mechanisms relating to greenhouse emissions," said environmental adviser Frede Cappelen before leaving for the Argentine capital.

"Examples of such mechanisms include the purchase and sale of emission quotas and investment in climate-related projects for developing countries."

But he takes a sober view of what is likely to be attainable during the two-week meeting. "We mustn't be disappointed that a certain amount of time could be needed with so many countries involved."

Adopted by the UN's Earth Summit at Rio de Janeiro in 1992, the climate change convention forms the basis for the protocol adopted at the Kyoto conference of the parties in Japan last December.

The latter document, which opens for the creation of a trading system in greenhouse gas emission quotas, is viewed positively by Statoil.

Efforts to reduce carbon dioxide emissions are under way at the group, which initiated a technology development programme in this area last year.