EU envoy sounds climate warning

by Reiji Yoshida

Climate change is “a threat multiplier” that could cause various crises, including forcing some of the weakest states to break apart, a key European Union diplomat warned Thursday in Tokyo.

Benita Ferrero-Waldner, European Commissioner for External Affairs, warned that climate change could spread food and water shortages, aggravate poverty, set off global competition to control resources, and even promote more migration from less-developed countries.

She also said a lack of joint action would undermine the credibility of the international community, stressing the need for the EU and Japan to work closely to fight global problems.

“Failure by us, the international community . . . may indeed undermine the credibility of international action and also encourage unilateralism,” she said in Tokyo.

Japan will chair the Group of Eight summit of developed countries in Toyako, Hokkaido, and is exploring ways of building an international framework to limit gas emissions causing global warming.