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Emissions - how much to cut

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Emissions - how much to cut

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A ship carrying coal has been prevented from unloading in Denmark. No other fossil fuel pollutes like coal pollutes, and so Greenpeace eco-militants chained themselves to a conveyer belt and spent a night on the crane. As the EU struggles to agree on a plan for greenhouse gas emission cuts, the group has cranked up its protests, warning against watering them down. European environment ministers in a closed conference with Commission and Parliament officials in Brussels have made some headway in their negotiations on how to fight climate change.

They endorsed a commitment to make renewable sources responsible for 20 percent of the bloc’s total energy consumption by 2020. But Italy refused to drop its demand to review the legislation in 2014. A stand-off over cleaner transport ended with an agreement that a portion of the biofuel 10 percent goal would be met not through biofuels but running cars and trains on green electricity. The biggest sticking point is auctioning carbon emissions allowances. Germany wants most to be free for industry. The Commission proposes phasing them in. Poland and other states heavily reliant on coal are also demanding concessions. Eastern European leaders will discuss the climate package with current EU Council President Nicolas Sarkozy in Gdansk on Saturday. The goal is to clinch a deal at the full EU summit in Brussels next week.